Thermal Ceramic Technology

Human in front of a FLIR Instrument. Notice the temperature variations
Human in front of a FLIR Instrument. Notice the temperature variations
Thermal Barrier in it's raw form
Thermal Barrier in it's raw form

Some Insulative coatings or Insulating coatings use a technology where a broad spectrum thermally reflective coating is applied to a specific type of micro-spheres to block heat radiation in a much larger or broader range of thermal energy (heat) to dissipate heat rapidly. This type of coated thermally reflective material (ceramic micro-sphere) reduces heat transfer through the coating.

An "Insulative" or "Insulating" coating works bi-directionally (reflects heat coming from either direction toward the painted surface. An example of this would be an exterior wall of a building to which an "Insulative" or "Insulating" coatings has been applied. Solar induced heat (direct sunlight) is reflected from the surface as well as heat (winter months) that is migrating through the wall outward toward the colder outside air. A "thermal Image" or infra-red photograph will clearly show the reduction of winter time heat loss from a home through areas that have been painted with a true "Insulative" or "Insulating" coating.

The ability to reflect or block heat from all sources such as fireplaces, heaters, and radiators inside a building as well as sunlight is the value of a true "Insulative" or "Insulating" coatings. These products reduce the work (heat loading) that "resistance insulation" such a fiberglass, foam, and rock wool have to do as well as air-conditioning systems.

Car exhausts usually require some form of heat barrier, especially high performance exhausts where a ceramic coating is often applied
Car exhausts usually require some form of heat barrier, especially high performance exhausts where a ceramic coating is often applied

Building_Insulation P1

 

Thermal Ceramic coating and the benefit to Buildings

Maintaining acceptable temperatures in buildings (by heating and cooling) uses a large proportion of global energy consumption. Building insulations also commonly use the principle of small trapped air-cells as explained above, e.g. fiberglass (specifically glass wool), cellulose, rock wool, polystyrene foam, urethane foam, vermiculite, perlite, cork, etc.

 

 

 

When well insulated, a building:

° Is energy-efficient, thus saving the owner money.

° Provides more uniform temperatures throughout the space. There is less temperature gradient both vertically (between ankle height and head height) and horizontally from exterior walls, ceilings and windows to the interior walls, thus producing a more comfortable occupant environment when outside temperatures are extremely cold or hot.

° Has minimal recurring expense. Unlike heating and cooling equipment, thermal insulation is permanent and does not require maintenance, upkeep, or adjustment.

° Lowers the carbon footprint of a building.

° In industry, energy has to be expended to raise, lower, or maintain the temperature of objects or process fluids. If these are not insulated, this increases the energy requirements of a process, and therefore the cost and environmental impact.

 

Quilite Advanced Flexible Reusable Surface Insulation (AFRSI). These tiles are used to insulate the Space Shuttle from the high temperatures generated by the orbiter’s friction with the Earth’s atmosphere on re-entry. The yellow markers denote the exact location on the orbiter.

 

Use in the space program and how ceramic coatings R&D was boosted.

The areas of the space shuttle that have the highest heat loading due to friction upon the shuttle's re-entry with the earth’s atmosphere are coated with a black carbon material which emits over 90% of the friction induced heat that the shuttle experiences upon rentry.

It should be noted that, while the ceramic technology was developed by NASA. The technology was considered declassified and released to the public in 1996. It is then up to the world marketplace to take the work of NASA scientists and researchers, and develop products from that point.

shuttle-reentry_7

Global R&D investment in Nanotechnology last year

US (m$)
1700
Asia (m$)
1400
Europe (m$)
650