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Open AccessArticle

Digitalizing the Paints and Coatings Development Process

Laboratory of Enterprise Engineering, Faculty of Organizational Sciences, University of Maribor, Kidričeva cesta 55a, 4000 Kranj, Slovenia
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Processes 2019, 7(8), 539; https://doi.org/10.3390/pr7080539
Received: 18 July 2019 / Revised: 9 August 2019 / Accepted: 12 August 2019 / Published: 15 August 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Thin Film Processes)
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Abstract

Numerous laboratory tests are used to determine the appropriateness of new formulations in the development process in the paint and coatings industry. New formulations are most often functionally inadequate, unacceptable for environmental or health reasons, or too expensive. Formulators are obliged to repeat laboratory tests until one of the formulations fulfills the minimum requirements. This is cumbersome, slow, and expensive, and can cause ecological problems, wasting materials on tests that do not produce the desired results. The purpose of this research was to find out if there might be a better way forward to increase efficiency and free up formulators to focus on new products. In this experiment, a new paints and coatings development process was redesigned based on the potential benefits of formulation digitalization. Instead of laboratory testing, a digital platform was used that has been developed and stocked with relevant, up-to-date, and complete, usable data. This study found that, by going digital, developers could vastly reduce non-value-added activities in the development process (by as much as 70%) and significantly shorten the entire process throughput time (by up to 48%). Using digital tools to facilitate the development process appears to be a possible way forward for the paint and coatings industry, saving time, materials, and money and protecting the environment. View Full-Text
Keywords: coatings industry; digitalization; development process; technical enabler; process analysis; process simulation coatings industry; digitalization; development process; technical enabler; process analysis; process simulation
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Kern, T.; Krhač, E.; Senegačnik, M.; Urh, B. Digitalizing the Paints and Coatings Development Process. Processes 2019, 7, 539.

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