DuPont Receives Clean Air Excellence Award

Wilmington, DE— The rev-olutionary science behind DuPont™ SuperSolids™ ultra-low emissions coatings technology has earned the United States Environmental Protection Agency's Clean Air Excellence Award.

SuperSolids™ clearcoat lowers volatile organic compound emissions more than 25 percent, while also improving scratch and mar resistance 60 percent for automotive finishes. The EPA presented the award March 20th in Washington D.C.

Launched in the spring of 2002, the innovation immediately lowered VOC emissions on the clearcoat production line by more than one quarter, in addition to eliminating more than 80 percent of the Hazardous Air Pollutant emissions from the complete topcoat process. The technology also reduced odors from the painting process by 50 percent. These improvements helped the DaimlerChrysler facility meet new permit requirements one year early.

DuPont achieves 65 percent solid content in the paint through SuperSolids™, exceeding the current industry-best standard of 50 percent solids and 50 percent solvent. DuPont has demonstrated technology to raise solids content to nearly 90 percent, further reducing dependence on traditional solvents to thin and disperse paint to significantly reduce environ-mental impact.

These benefits are accomplished by changing the nature of oligomers, or small polymer chains that originally have few structural properties. The chemical innovation gives oligomers a new structure by changing the way they react to each other. Simply stated, the solids are made to behave more like a fluid, without requiring higher levels of solvent. SuperSolids™ make it possible to use existing liquid paint equipment without additional hardware costs for applying the paint and add-on emissions equipment, generating potential cost savings of up to $20 million per plant.

Also, improved scratch and mar resistance enhances initial vehicle coating appearance. Consumers can enjoy additional long-term benefits since the finish is less prone to the appearance of fine scratches and swirls after washing.

"SuperSolids™ is a remarkable new technology with considerable potential to help vehicle manufacturers protect the environment and increase value to consumers, without driving up costs," said Robert Matheson, manager for strategic technology for DuPont Performance Coatings. DuPont continues to work with DaimlerChrysler and other automotive partners to expand the use of SuperSolids™ across the globe.

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