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20 March 2024

Perspectives and Trends in the Future of Paint Stripping

The paint stripping of metal parts requires increasingly sustainable, safe, and efficient processes. ALIT Technologies is at the forefront of offering advanced answers and innovative solutions to meet future challenges.

The metal surface treatment market in general and, more specifically, the chemical paint stripping sector are undergoing a significant transformation, with an increasing demand for cheaper but at the same time more efficient products. Traditional requirements persist but new trends are developing, driven by the need to minimise the toxicity of chemicals and improve the safety of plants, equipping them with the most advanced and efficient technological devices and tools.

Trends in the field of chemical paint stripping

The chemical paint stripping market is increasingly moving away from products containing methylene chloride and N-methyl-2-pyrrolidone (NMP), which are well known for their high toxicity. Wherever possible, customers tend to opt for water-based paint strippers, such as METALSTRIP 2011 from ALIT Technologies. If, on the other hand, the specific technical conditions, such as the type of metal substrate or paint, do not allow for the use of water-based paint stripping agents, the products must be formulated with a 100% organic base. In these cases, too, chemicals with a low environmental and toxicological impact are preferred, such as the METALSTRIP 136 series from ALIT Technologies. For example, METALSTRIP 1365, an organic-based paint stripper for medium-temperature applications, is particularly appreciated by customers looking for an excellent compromise between paint stripping performance, bath filterability, and low environmental and toxicological impact.

All the mentioned products have a working temperature between 45 and 75 °C. This implicitly indicates that the market is moving away from paint stripping processes conducted at room temperature with hazardous NMP or methylene chloride-based chemicals and towards medium-temperature processes using more sustainable chemistry. Indeed, a higher temperature improves process efficiency and allows utilising formulations with raw materials that are less hazardous to the operator and the environment.

Challenges and opportunities in the field of in-line chemical paint stripping

In-line paint stripping is a process carried out within a coating line to enable the hooks and frames required for hanging the components to be paint-stripped without removing them from the overhead conveyor. After workpiece unloading, the hooks and increasingly often the frames are led through a paint stripping tank while still hanging on the overhead conveyor, in order to go back to the line clean, free of any traces of paint, and ready for a new coating cycle.

With the increasingly widespread use of loading and unloading robots in coating lines, in-line paint stripping is also becoming more and more crucial to ensure the proper functioning of the robots themselves, as frames that have not been perfectly paint-stripped can compromise these machines’ performance degree, thus damaging the coated parts and even slowing down or stopping the workflow – all of which results in significant losses of turnover for the coating lines. Paint stripping quality thus becomes key to the efficiency of the entire process. Whereas in the past clean hooks were mainly needed to ensure good electrical contact between the parts to be painted and the line itself, now the optimisation of the unloading robots’ operation is an equally important factor. Clean frames guarantee all of this – and in-line chemical paint stripping plants are the means to meet such requirements.

ALIT Technologies’ key role in the paint stripping industry

ALIT Technologies operates at the very heart of these transformations, offering a comprehensive range of solutions to meet evolving market needs. Among its services, it conducts paint stripping laboratory tests, provides detailed chemical and engineering reports, and offers complete solutions in terms of both in-line paint stripping systems and related chemicals.

In summary, the paint stripping industry is moving in a more sustainable, safe, and efficient direction – and ALIT is at the forefront in offering advanced answers and innovative solutions to meet future challenges.

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