Uflex secures patent for epoxy ester resin

The Chemicals Business of Uflex has secured a patent (Patent No 354903) on ‘a process for the preparation of epoxy ester resin’ in accordance with the provisions of the Patents Act, 1970. This is the first patent for Chemicals business ever in India and it will be considering applying for a global patent in due course of time. The Chemicals Business is a leading manufacturer of inks, coatings and adhesives for flexible packaging, cartons, labels, and paperboard.

18 Jan 2021 | By Rahul Kumar

The new patent will ensure technical advancement in providing a process for resin preparation wherein no waste water treatment is required which is a significant move in the direction of sustainability. Furthermore, epoxy ester resin prepared by this process will be used in radiation curing or energy curing and therefore curing will be faster, unlike the typical epoxy ester resin which is thermally cured and takes a longer time besides being uneconomical. With enhanced stability of coating and its chemical resistance attributes a total of 16 claims have been taken under this patent.

On securing this patent, Rajesh Bhasin, joint president, Chemicals Division, Uflex, said, “We are extremely delighted with the continued strengthening of our R&D prowess. The issuance of this patent is another step in the development of a robust portfolio for our business. This is part of our initiative to backward integrate, using our inherent strengths. Such initiatives help us to have greater control on product quality and supply security. This unique achievement is all because of the progressive approach, years of hard work and commitment.”

Epoxy ester resins are known for their use in coatings, paints and adhesives. Before this patent was registered, conventionally epoxy ester resin is produced in a two-stage process. The first stage is condensation which generates a lot of salt that is removed through several water washings, resulting in high effluent generation. Typically, waste water contains 50,000-95,000 ppm (parts per million) TDS (total dissolved solid) and 50,000-60,000 ppm COD (chemical oxygen demand), which, therefore, requires large capital investment for waste water treatment plants adding to the capital expenditure and operating expense of the process of Epoxy resin preparation. In the second stage of a conventional process, Epoxy resin is converted into epoxy ester resin with the esterification process which results in the formation of undesirable epoxy ester resin, which has a dark colour and odour.

However, Uflex’ newly invented and patented approach arrests the challenges posed in a conventional method as the Epoxy ester produced has no waste water generation, no odour and neither a dark colour which is good for fast curing coatings with efficient cost-effective processing.

Epoxy Resins are gaining supremacy over the conventional use of Vinyl Esters and polyesters in the flexible packaging industry as well as in offset printing areas.  Epoxy resins deliver performance attribute in five key areas.

  • Better adhesion by allowing to bond to the reinforcement or core
  • Superior mechanical properties imparting higher strength and stiffness
  • Improved resistance to fatigue and micro cracking issues
  • Reduced degradation from water ingress. Epoxy Resins have lesser shrink ability by up to 50% in comparison to Vinyl Esters and Polyesters.
  • Increased resistance to osmosis which is way better than vinyl ester and polyesters
Tags : Uflex;