Applied nanotechnology research developed at the Lurederra Technological Centre in Navarre has given rise to a range of water-repellent nanotechnological products that provide revolutionary technological solutions for the construction materials sector, both in the consumer products segment of concrete, bricks and tiles as well as in very high value applications in the field of rehabilitation and conservation of historical and archaeological heritage.
Highlighted within this series of revolutionary, nanoparticle-based products is Tecnadis Aquapore, a water-based hydrofugant product for porous and slightly porous substrates, such as concrete, brick, natural stone, timber and ceramic. The features of this product are, unlike any other existing on the market, that it combines an effect of extreme hydrophobicity with total respiration of the substrate, the complete conservation of the original appearance, easy application and at a highly competitive price. Being a water-based product, moreover, it means an absence of volatile organic compounds and non-flammability.
Tecnadis Aquapore owes its extraordinary combination of properties to the fact that it is manufactured with sophisticated nanoparticles, developed at the Navarre Technological Centre, and achieves extraordinary water repellence due to its high angle of contact - greater than 150º - that forms between drops of water and the substrate surface, a phenomenon known as the “superhydrophobicity effect”. Given it is not a coating which forms a film on the surface, respiration of the treated material is absolute, which is essential to facilitate transpiration and thus avoid deterioration, for example, due to icing/de-icing cycles. Tecnadis Aquapore, is also totally transparent and does not modify the colour of the substrate, nor does it react chemically with it, thus avoiding modification thereof.
Another product of the Tecnadisrange is Tecnadis Effect, especially designed for façades and other vertical and inclined surfaces made of porous and slightly porous materials. This hydrofugant solution is also transparent and helps conservation of the material, as it provides long-term protection against water. Tecnadis Effect is formulated on an organic basis and combines a superhydrophobicity effect with quick drying for those applications in which extreme water repellence combined with total permeability to vapour is required.
With the same characteristics as the previous product but designed for use on horizontal applications is Tecnadis Performance, with extremely good behaviour on floors, as well as on various types of pavements and tiles. Tecnadis Performance combines spectacular water repellence with impressive resistance to abrasion and oils, and is already being applied by manufacturers of building materials (marble, granite, terraces, concrete and sandstone), by industrial cleaning and maintenance companies and by construction companies
Tecnadis GWR is especially suitable for vehicle windscreens and other vitreous surfaces, facilitating the elimination of water on treated surfaces and thus enhancing both day and night visibility. GWR, moreover, avoids fixing of ice to glass, has good resistance to abrasion and does not contain hydrochloric acid. Tecnadis GWR is completely displacing its competitors in the professional sector of car windscreen repair and replacement, the application of this product providing it with additional enhanced value.
These products, which are being very well received in the market, have already been applied in emblematic locations such as the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela, specifically in cornices and gutters, at column bases of the “Baelo Claudia” (Cadiz) archaeological site and in the exterior statues of the church of Our Lady of Loreto in Lisbon. Beside the sector of historical heritage conservation, it is also being applied by manufacturers of building materials, by industrial cleaning and maintenance companies and by construction companies.