Queen’s U developed coating to banish smudgy touchscreens
By Design Engineering StaffGeneral material science Queens University
Queen’s university researcher’s fingerprint-resistant coating receives OCE funding.
Queen’s University chemists, Dr. Guojun Liu and Dean Xiong, announced the development of a fingerprint-resistant coating that may soon prevent smudges from accumulating on touchscreens.
Inspired by the water-resistant microstructures of lotus leafs, the coating looks to be effective in repelling both water- and oil-based deposits from many surfaces, including glass, metals, wood, ceramics, plastics, fabrics, fibres and paper, the researchers said.
In addition to touchscreens, it could also be used for such things as graffiti-proofing walls and making ship hulls resistant to marine organisms, as well as for anti-icing and anti-fogging applications.
The coating’s developers are currently partnering with PARTEQ Innovations, the university’s technology transfer office, and Milton, Ontario-based paint-additive manufacturer, Lorama, Inc., to commercialize the “smart” coating technology.
“This super-amphiphobic technology is exciting because it has the potential to address a wide variety of industrial issues, while also benefiting the environment,” says Lucy Su, commercial development manager at Lorama Inc.
To help finance the coating’s commercialization, the Ontario Centres of Excellence (OCE) announced it is investing $200,000 in the Queen’s University innovation through its Collaborative Research program, which spurs innovation by promoting research partnerships between industry and academia. OCE previously invested $25,000 in the project through its Technical Problem Solving program.
“We’re excited to partner with Queen’s and Lorama to support this fantastic product,” says OCE president and CEO Dr. Tom Corr. “With literally hundreds of millions of touchscreen devices being used daily, breakthrough technology that would make for a cleaner screen presents a huge business opportunity and would be an incredible showcase of a made-in-Ontario innovation that will create jobs and boost the local economy.”