Finding an alternative to CAB pigment chip dispersion

by May 2, 2019Innovations0 comments

What are CAB pigment chips and how are they used in formulations?

CAB pigment chip dispersions are pre-dispersed organic and inorganic pigments in cellulose acetate butyrate (CAB) resin systems. They have a wide range of advantages for paint producers, who often use them in their formulations to achieve improved processing times, shorter production processes, higher levels of pigment content, and especially excellent coloristic performance.

CAB pigment chips are most commonly found in automotive paint and high-end industrial paint applications, for both metallic and solid colors. CAB resin can be applied both as thermoplastic film formers and crosslink coating modifiers.

While CAB pigments have a wide range of advantages, it is important to note that they can increase the costs of formulations significantly. Our technical team therefore decided to develop a grinding formulation with JebChem dispersing additives, in order to improve the coloristic properties of black pigment paste for Automotive 2K PU paint systems, competing with CAB black pigment chips.

How can we measure the efficiency of an alternative to CAB pigment chips?

Easy dispersion

Any viable alternative must provide the same or even improved dispersion properties.

High Jetness

Paint properties and shading must provide the same or improved results over CAB pigment chips.

Good Stability

Without proper stability features, pigment properties might initially be able to compete with CAB chips, but will cause issues due to changes throughout the lifetime. It is essential that any CAB chip alternatives maintain good pigment stability control.

Improved processing time

Can an alternative improve the processing time even further if no CAB pigments are used?

Decreased product costs

An essential parameter to measure the success of a replacement is to have the same or even improved properties over CAB pigment chips, while lowering the overall formulation costs.

Our Approach

Our team from the Regional Coating Innovation Center set out to develop a carbon black paste without CAB pigment chips. The minimum requirement was to match the advantages of CAB chips, while providing formulators with lowered overall costs. How did the replacement perform against CAB chips?

  • JebChem – Blackness (MY) 100% 100%
  • CAB Black Chip – Blackness (MY) 83% 83%
  • JebChem – Colour Strength 100% 100%
  • CAB Black Chip – Colour Strength 66% 66%
  • JebChem – Gloss 100% 100%
  • CAB Black Chip – Gloss 76% 76%

Results on stability, processing time, and costs

Testing the viscosity of the newly created alternative products showed good stability performance.

The particle size, which is the primary criteria of dispersion quality, was able to compete with CAB pigments at less than 15 microns.

Processing time was reduced from 5 hours to merely 2 hours during production.

So how about the final goal – reducing the costs of formulations by creating an alternative to CAB pigment chips?