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Another option to hexavalent chromium

03/28/2014

A research team from Iramis has developed a new process for prepping metals for paint. This technique does not use hexavalent chromium, which is highly carcinogenic. Zoom on this strategic discovery.

A research team from Iramis has developed a new process for prepping metals for paint, which does not use hexavalent chromium (Cr VI). This discovery is strategic because Cr VI is highly carcinogenic, mutagenic and toxic for reproduction. It should be forbidden in the short run. This new process has been patented.

Hexavalent chromium causes bronchopulmonary cancers and nasal cavities cancers. Cr VI is highly mutagenic and has toxic effects on reproduction. It also has very severe toxic risks: nasal septum perforation, contact dermatitis, asthma, etc. It has already been forbidden in cosmetic and food industries but it has been granted an extension in the fields of construction and aeronautics. Replacing Cr VI is a priority according to the CMR decree of February 1st, 2001, about carcinogenic, mutagenic and toxic for reproduction factors.

Chemists from Iramis have thus developed SEEP (Surface Electroinitiated Emulsion Polymerization). This alternative process should replace primers which will soon be forbidden. A hydrophilic thin film, compatible with paints, is transplanted on aeronautics metals (titanium, aluminium and their alloys, stainless steels, etc.). Adhesion and corrosion tests were performed successfully.

This work comes as a result of a collaboration between Iramis and PROTEC Industrie.

More information on the Iramis website.

Picture: a chromium (VI) compound: chromium trioxide