Material Science - UV Protection of Sports Surfaces

Material Science - UV Protection of Sports Surfaces

2016-03 Ultraviolet (UV) radiation leads to decreased performance and undesirable changes in appearance of polymers.  Typically, polymer substrates contain for example components that may absorb ultraviolet light, which otherwise could initiate an oxidative degradation of the polymer, usually referred to as ‘photo-oxidation’.  

Material Science - UV protection of sports surfaces

The chemical process of photo-degradation involves multiple steps from ultraviolet absorption, to formation of free radicals and deteriorating attack on the backbone of the polymer substrate.  Usually, the UV degradation becomes evident in the form of loss of gloss, pigment or color fading, yellowing and partial or complete of loss of integrity.  Accordingly, it is imperative to adequately stabilize and protect the components used in sports surfaces.  Typically, this is achieved through a combination of an ultraviolet light absorber, a radical scavenger and an antioxidant which provide synergistic performance for protection of a polymer substrate.

Additional information

If you want to understand some of the technical insights and mitigation strategies or require assistance with a root-cause analysis, please contact chemneera for expert witness services.

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