Special Issue "Novel Marine Antifouling Coatings"

A special issue of Coatings (ISSN 2079-6412).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 31 March 2022.

Special Issue Editor

Dr. Elisabete Ribeiro Silva
E-Mail Website1 Website2
Guest Editor
1. Centro de Química e Bioquímica (CQB), Faculdade de Ciências, Universidade de Lisboa, Campo Grande, 1749-016, Lisboa, Portugal
2. Centro de Recursos Naturais e Ambiente (CERENA), Instituto Superior Técnico, Universidade de Lisboa, 1049-001 Lisboa, Portugal
Interests: antifouling strategies; non-toxic antifouling coatings; immobilization of bioactive agents in polymeric matrices; catalytic processes for pollutants remediation (VOCs, pesticides)

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Antifouling coatings play a vital role in the marine industry for the prevention and/or control of marine biofouling attach and growth on submerged surfaces. This undesired bio-attach has been associated with serious economic and environmental penalties on both stationary and non-stationary (mobile) marine systems, from shipping, fisheries, aquaculture (e.g., cages) and other offshore activities, for instance, oil/wind-turbine-sea-platforms, desalination units, pipelines, water valves, filters and sensors. It can promote substrate deterioration, systems clogging, drag friction and fluids contamination, follow-on costly maintenance and retrofitting consequences.

Along the history of protective marine coatings, several antifouling strategies have been exploited. The most revolutionary coatings generation was marked by the appearance of the tributyltin (TBT) releasing based antifouling coatings, around the 1960s, owing to their high efficacy and broad spectrum toxic action, able to provide huge operational savings. But soon this solution was abandoned due to its harmful effects on the marine ecosystem, being totally banned in 2008. Since then, efforts have been done to replace this toxic agent and/or derivatives. Most conventional antifouling strategies (e.g., soluble polymeric matrices, controlled depletion polymer coatings (CDPs), self-polishing tin-free copolymer coatings (TF-SPC)) are however still acting by controlled-releasing mechanisms of toxic agents or booster biocides. Despite being considered less toxic to the aquatic environment, the global environmental concern has been leading to severe restrictions on their use. Alternative strategies, mostly inspired by the observation of natural chemical-physical antifouling defense mechanisms, have been emerging, from foul-releasing systems, biopassive polymeric coating, microtopography modified polymers, among others. Even so, these strategies still do not accomplish an effective effect comparable to the TBT generation or involve costly implementations.

Efforts are required to provide new strategies able to offer more efficient and sustainable environmental-friendly antifouling solutions, as well as to overcome major challenges, such as the complexity of the biofouling process and the global warming, able to inflict serious impacts in the marine ecosystem.

This Special Issue of Coatings on "Novel Marine Antifouling Coatings" is intended to cover the most recent and promising advances in marine antifouling coatings.

The main topics that this Special issue of Coatings will encompass are:

  • Foul-releasing coatings;
  • Antifouling self-healing coatings;
  • Non-releasing biocidal coatings;
  • Biopassive based polymeric coatings (zwitterionic, self-assembled monolayers approaches);
  • Bioinspired coatings (incorporating natural and/or new synthesized biomimetic based agents, microtopographically modified coatings);
  • Hybrid and/or multifunctional coatings (amphiphilic/stimuli-responsive systems).

Dr. Elisabete Ribeiro Silva
Guest Editor

 

Manuscript Submission Information

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Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Coatings is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1800 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Published Papers (8 papers)

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Research

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Article
Antimicrobial Ceramic Filters for Water Bio-Decontamination
Coatings 2021, 11(3), 323; https://doi.org/10.3390/coatings11030323 - 11 Mar 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 808
Abstract
Bio-contamination of water through biofouling, which involves the natural colonization of submerged surfaces by waterborne organisms, is a global socio-economic concern, allied to premature materials bio-corrosion and high human health risks. Most effective strategies release toxic and persistent disinfectant compounds into the aquatic [...] Read more.
Bio-contamination of water through biofouling, which involves the natural colonization of submerged surfaces by waterborne organisms, is a global socio-economic concern, allied to premature materials bio-corrosion and high human health risks. Most effective strategies release toxic and persistent disinfectant compounds into the aquatic medium, causing environmental problems and leading to more stringent legislation regarding their use. To minimize these side effects, a newly non-biocide-release coating strategy suitable for several polymeric matrices, namely polydimethylsiloxane and polyurethane (PU)-based coatings, was used to generate antimicrobial ceramic filters for water bio-decontamination. The best results, in terms of antimicrobial activity and biocide release, showed an expressed delay and a decrease of up to 66% in the population of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus bacteria on ceramic filters coated with polyurethane (PU)-based coatings containing grafted Econea biocide, and no evidence of biocide release after being submerged for 45 days in water. Biocidal PU-based surfaces were also less prone to Enterococcus faecalis biofilm formation under flow conditions with an average reduction of 60% after 48 h compared to a pristine PU-based surface. Biocidal coated filters show to be a potential eco-friendly alternative for minimizing the environmental risks associated with biofouling formation in water-based industrial systems. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Novel Marine Antifouling Coatings)
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Article
Developing New Marine Antifouling Surfaces: Learning from Single-Strain Laboratory Tests
Coatings 2021, 11(1), 90; https://doi.org/10.3390/coatings11010090 - 15 Jan 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1228
Abstract
The development of antifouling (AF) technology for marine environments is an area of intense research given the severe economic and ecological effects of marine biofouling. Preliminary data from in vitro assays is frequently used to screen the performance of AF coatings. It is [...] Read more.
The development of antifouling (AF) technology for marine environments is an area of intense research given the severe economic and ecological effects of marine biofouling. Preliminary data from in vitro assays is frequently used to screen the performance of AF coatings. It is intuitive that microbial composition plays a major role in surface colonization. The rationale behind this study is to investigate whether using a mixed population for the in vitro tests yields substantially different results than using single strains during initial screening. A polymeric coating was tested against single- and dual-species cultures of two common microfouler organisms for 49 days. A bacterium (Pseudoaltermonas tunicata) and a cyanobacterium (Cyanobium sp. LEGE 10375) were used in this study. Linear regression analysis revealed that Cyanobium sp. biofilms were significantly associated with a higher number of cells, wet weight, thickness, and biovolume compared to dual-species biofilms. P. tunicata alone had a biofilm growth kinetics similar to dual-species biofilms, although the P. tunicataCyanobium sp. mixture developed less dense and thinner biofilms compared to both single-species biofilms. Cyanobium sp. LEGE 10375 biofilms provided the worst-case scenario, i.e., the conditions that caused higher biofilm amounts on the surface material under test. Therefore, it is likely that assessing the AF performance of new coatings using the most stringent conditions may yield more robust results than using a mixed population, as competition between microfouler organisms may reduce the biofilm formation capacity of the consortium. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Novel Marine Antifouling Coatings)
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Article
Marine Antibiofouling Properties of TiO2 and Ti-Cu-O Films Deposited by Aerosol-Assisted Chemical Vapor Deposition
Coatings 2020, 10(8), 779; https://doi.org/10.3390/coatings10080779 - 11 Aug 2020
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1305
Abstract
The actual interest in developing light-induced catalytic coatings to act as an antibiofouling alternative has recently prompted interest in the incorporation of Cu into TiO2 films, working as a visible light sensitizer catalyst. TiO2 and new Ti-Cu-O films with Cu contents [...] Read more.
The actual interest in developing light-induced catalytic coatings to act as an antibiofouling alternative has recently prompted interest in the incorporation of Cu into TiO2 films, working as a visible light sensitizer catalyst. TiO2 and new Ti-Cu-O films with Cu contents ranging between 16% and 75% Cu/(Cu + Ti) are deposited by aerosol-assisted metalorganic chemical vapor deposition at a substrate temperature of 550 °C. The films are composed of TiO2 anatase phase, mixed with Cu2O when including Cu in the composition. Pure TiO2 films’ morphologies are characterized by the formation of microflower-like structures with nanometric petals, which induce a high specific surface. These features are not present in Ti-Cu-O films. A UV-Visible study revealed that the optical band gap energy decreases with increasing Cu content. Interestingly, Ti-Cu-O films presented a highly photo-catalytic activity in the orange-G degradation. Marine biofouling field tests in Lorient’s Harbor in France and in vitro tests were carried out in order to evaluate the antifouling performance of the films, revealing that topography and chemical composition can act differently on different species. Field tests revealed that TiO2 microflowers reduced the fouling coverage. Besides, Ti-Cu-O films with 16 at.% Cu presented lower fouling coverage than films containing 58 at.% Cu. In vitro tests using two diatoms (P. tricornutum and N. perminuta) showed that the spaces between microflowers play a significant role in the adhesion of diatoms: microalgae adhere less when spaces are bigger than their cells, compared to when spaces are of the same size as cells. Films containing Cu did not alter N. perminuta growth nor adhesion, while they affected P. tricornutum by lowering its growth rate and adhesion without noticeable toxicity. Indeed, Cu-Ti-O is a very promising non-toxic fouling release film for marine and industrial applications. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Novel Marine Antifouling Coatings)
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Article
Biofouling of FeNP-Coated SWRO Membranes with Bacteria Isolated after Pre-Treatment in the Sea of Cortez
Coatings 2019, 9(7), 462; https://doi.org/10.3390/coatings9070462 - 23 Jul 2019
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 2430
Abstract
Commercial seawater reverse osmosis (SWRO) membranes were coated with iron nanoparticles (FeNPs) and biofouled with a bacterium strain isolated from the Sea of Cortez, Mexico. This strain was selected and characterized, as it was the only cultivable strain in pretreated seawater. Molecular identification [...] Read more.
Commercial seawater reverse osmosis (SWRO) membranes were coated with iron nanoparticles (FeNPs) and biofouled with a bacterium strain isolated from the Sea of Cortez, Mexico. This strain was selected and characterized, as it was the only cultivable strain in pretreated seawater. Molecular identification of the strain showed that it belongs to Bacillus halotolerans MCC1. This strain was Gram positive with spore production, and was susceptible to Fe+2 toxicity with a minimum inhibitory concentration of 1.8 g L−1. Its biofouling potential on both uncoated and FeNP coated reverse osmosis (RO) membranes was measured via biofilm layer thickness, total cell count, optical density and organic matter. The FeNP-coated RO membrane presented a significant reduction in biofilm cake layer thickness (>90%), total cells (>67%), optical density (>42%) and organic matter (>92%) with respect to an uncoated commercial membrane. Thus, Bacillus halotolerans MCC1 shows great potential to biofoul RO membranes as it can pass through ultrafiltration membranes due to its spore producing ability; nonetheless, FeNP-coated membranes represent a potential alternative to mitigate RO membrane biofouling. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Novel Marine Antifouling Coatings)
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Article
Synthesis of Polydimethylsiloxane-Modified Polyurethane and the Structure and Properties of Its Antifouling Coatings
Coatings 2018, 8(5), 157; https://doi.org/10.3390/coatings8050157 - 26 Apr 2018
Cited by 25 | Viewed by 3369
Abstract
Polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) could be used to improve the antifouling properties of the fouling release coatings based on polyurethane (PU). A series of polydimethylsiloxane-modified polyurethane coatings were synthesized with various PDMS contents, using the solvent-free method. The effects of PDMS content and seawater immersion [...] Read more.
Polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) could be used to improve the antifouling properties of the fouling release coatings based on polyurethane (PU). A series of polydimethylsiloxane-modified polyurethane coatings were synthesized with various PDMS contents, using the solvent-free method. The effects of PDMS content and seawater immersion on the chain structure and surface morphology were investigated by confocal laser scanning microscopy (CLSM), atomic force microscopy (AFM), Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR), differential scanning calorimetry (DSC), thermogravimetric analysis (TGA) and X-ray diffraction (XRD). Based on the measurements of contact angles of deionized water and diiodomethane, surface free energies of the coatings were estimated according to the Owens two-liquid method. The PDMS-modified polyurethane exhibited lower surface free energy and a lower glass transition temperature than polyurethane. The presence of PDMS increased the degree of microphase separation, and enhanced the water resistance of the coatings. The optimum amount of PDMS reduced the elastic modulus and increased the ductility of the coating. The presence of PDMS benefited the removal of weakly attached organisms. Panel tests in the Yellow Sea demonstrated the antifouling activity of the PDMS-modified polyurethane. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Novel Marine Antifouling Coatings)
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Article
Sharply Reduced Biofilm Formation from Cobetia marina and in Black Sea Water on Modified Siloxane Coatings
Coatings 2018, 8(4), 136; https://doi.org/10.3390/coatings8040136 - 11 Apr 2018
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 2723
Abstract
Siloxane fouling release coatings are currently the only viable non-toxic commercial alternative to toxic biocide antifouling paints. However, they only partially inhibit biofouling since biofilms remain a major issue. With the aim to improve the bacterial resistance of siloxane coatings modified with non-ionic [...] Read more.
Siloxane fouling release coatings are currently the only viable non-toxic commercial alternative to toxic biocide antifouling paints. However, they only partially inhibit biofouling since biofilms remain a major issue. With the aim to improve the bacterial resistance of siloxane coatings modified with non-ionic surfactant (NIS), antioxidant (AO) or both NIS/AO, the ability of PEG-silane co-cross-linker was investigated to reduce Cobetia marina adhesion and multispecies biofilm formation from natural seawater. Surface physical-chemical and physical-mechanical parameters relevant to bio-adhesion were estimated before the testing of the biofilm formation. Slightly reduced biofilm from C. marina and sharply reduced multispecies biofilm, formed in natural sea water, were found on the PEG-silane co-cross-linked coatings without modifying additives. However, both C. marina growth and biofilm formation from natural sea water were sharply reduced on the PEG-silane co-cross-linked coatings containing NIS or AO, even more, no C. marina adhesion was seen on the coating containing NIS and AO simultaneously. Possible explanations of the observed effects are presented in this article. It was concluded that the PEG-silane co-cross-linker, toghether with NIS and AO, can be used as an efficient tool to additionally reduce the bioadhesion of Gram-negative marine bacteria and multispecies biofilm formation on siloxane antifouling coatings. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Novel Marine Antifouling Coatings)
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Article
The Dispersion Tolerance of Micro/Nano Particle in Polydimethylsiloxane and Its Influence on the Properties of Fouling Release Coatings Based on Polydimethylsiloxane
Coatings 2017, 7(7), 107; https://doi.org/10.3390/coatings7070107 - 21 Jul 2017
Cited by 14 | Viewed by 2984
Abstract
Particles can be used to improve the mechanical properties of fouling release coatings based on polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS). In this study, coatings were prepared by high speed stirring using seven types of particles, with different particle size from nanometer to micrometer. The influence of [...] Read more.
Particles can be used to improve the mechanical properties of fouling release coatings based on polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS). In this study, coatings were prepared by high speed stirring using seven types of particles, with different particle size from nanometer to micrometer. The influence of specific surface area of the particles on the dispersion tolerance was investigated. The results showed that the dispersion tolerance of particles in PDMS decreased with the increase in specific surface area of the particle, and for nano particles, the factor most affecting the dispersion tolerance was the specific surface area of agglomerate particle. Subsequently, the surface properties, mechanical properties, and biofilm adhesion assay of coatings were investigated. Results indicated that surface roughness increased with the increase of dispersion tolerance. Surface roughness of samples improved the hydrophobicity of samples, yet the polar chemical group of nano silica and fumed silica reduced the hydrophobicity of samples. Further, particles could enhance the mechanical properties of coating, especially nano particles. Compared to the coating without particle, biofilm adhesion performance of coating with particles decreased, which was determined by the increase of the elastic modulus and surface roughness of coatings. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Novel Marine Antifouling Coatings)
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Review

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Review
Recent Advances in Mussel-Inspired Synthetic Polymers as Marine Antifouling Coatings
Coatings 2020, 10(7), 653; https://doi.org/10.3390/coatings10070653 - 07 Jul 2020
Cited by 11 | Viewed by 1872
Abstract
Synthetic oligomers and polymers inspired by the multifunctional tethering system (byssus) of the common mussel (genus Mytilus) have emerged since the 1980s as a very active research domain within the wider bioinspired and biomimetic materials arena. The unique combination of strong underwater [...] Read more.
Synthetic oligomers and polymers inspired by the multifunctional tethering system (byssus) of the common mussel (genus Mytilus) have emerged since the 1980s as a very active research domain within the wider bioinspired and biomimetic materials arena. The unique combination of strong underwater adhesion, robust mechanical properties and self-healing capacity has been linked to a large extent to the presence of the unusual α-amino acid derivative l-DOPA (l-3,4-dihydroxyphenylalanine) as a building block of the mussel byssus proteins. This paper provides a short overview of marine biofouling, discussing the different marine biofouling species and natural defenses against these, as well as biomimicry as a concept investigated in the marine antifouling context. A detailed discussion of the literature on the Mytilus mussel family follows, covering elements of their biology, biochemistry and the specific measures adopted by these mussels to utilise their l-DOPA-rich protein sequences (and specifically the ortho-bisphenol (catechol) moiety) in their benefit. A comprehensive account is then given of the key catechol chemistries (covalent and non-covalent/intermolecular) relevant to adhesion, cohesion and self-healing, as well as of some of the most characteristic mussel protein synthetic mimics reported over the past 30 years and the related polymer functionalisation strategies with l-DOPA/catechol. Lastly, we review some of the most recent advances in such mussel-inspired synthetic oligomers and polymers, claimed as specifically aimed or intended for use in marine antifouling coatings and/or tested against marine biofouling species. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Novel Marine Antifouling Coatings)
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