Australia - Low waste powder coating wins sustainability award


A powder coating product developed by Dulux Powder Coating and CSIRO, that is being tailored for use in the automotive industry, was one of five winners at the Victorian Premierís Sustainability Awards announced recently.

Davey Water Products was another winner for its focus on resource efficiency.

Orica-owned Dulux Powder Coating and CSIRO won the award in the products and services category for its powder coating - known as Trimatrx - that is suitable for plastics. It replaces conventional wet paint finishes or liquid coatings traditionally used on plastic components.

Dulux Powder Coatings technical manager, Bill Matthews said that a major sustainability advantage of the coating is that it does not contain toxic solvents - which means no harmful chemicals are released into the atmosphere or into waterways and the environment.

It also reduces the amount of solid waste ending up in landfill. Traditional liquid coatings do not have a high rate of spray transfer onto plastic parts and up to 70% is lost as waste. However, almost all of the new powder coating ends up on plastic components and any residual powder can be reused before it is cured.

Up to 50% less energy is used during the curing - or hardening - process. The powder coating can be cured at much lower temperatures and for shorter times than in the case of traditional powders used on metal finishes.

The product is now being customised for use in the automotive industry. It could replace the 10 ML of liquid paint used by the Australian automotive industry every year to coat surfaces of vehicles - including decorative finishes on plastic components such as engine covers, body parts and bumper bars.

Meanwhile, the award winner in the large business category was Davey Water Products - a manufacturer of rainwater pumps, filtration and water treatment equipment.

The company has reduced potable water use in manufacturing operations by 50% - or one ML per year - and reduced waste generation by 82% by volume and 42% by weight - or 3,420m≥ per year. The reduction in waste generation was largely the result of using less cardboard, paper and plastic wrapping.

Davey also captured the rain water which falls on the roof of its building. Over one ML of rainwater was harvested in the past year and stored. It was used to flush all the building toilets as well as supply rinse water for the powder coating pre-treatment line.

Other award winners included -

Community Award – The Great Ocean Road Coast Committee;

  • Small Business Award – Etiko Fair Trade and;
  • Public Sector Award – Williamstown High School, Bayview Street Campus and Spowers Architects.

For more information on the Victorian Premierís Sustainability Awards - Click Here