Towards a fundamental understanding of interactions at polymer/metal interfaces through a dialogue between quantum modeling, conceptual DFT and experiment.

Project Details


The surfaces of almost all objects that we encounter on a daily basis are covered with coatings. These coatings, such as paints, can have diverse functionalities: corrosion protection, esthetics, self-cleaning materials and many others. Coatings mainly consist of micrometer-thick polymeric films and the process of their attachment to the surface is called adhesion. From the applied point of view, attention is usually focused on the development of coatings according to the required function, while the properties of the surfaces on which they are being deposited are rarely taken into account.

Recent experimental studies showed that the strength of the adhesion between the coating and the surface and thus the degree of its protection is determined by interactions in a very thin region where the coating meets the substrate. However, this so-called buried interface is hidden below the micrometer-thick layer of the coating and therefore reaching this interface is a highly challenging task. In this project, we aim at characterizing this unexplored region and determining the multiple factors involved in the adhesion process of polymer coatings on metallic substrates using computational chemistry.

The computational results together with supplied complementary experimental data will ultimately provide a new, fundamental understanding of the adhesion at the polymer/metal interface.
Effective start/end date1/10/171/06/23


  • coatings

Flemish discipline codes in use since 2023

  • Physical chemistry not elsewhere classified


Explore the research topics touched on by this project. These labels are generated based on the underlying awards/grants. Together they form a unique fingerprint.