Superior UV-resistant protective film for the architectural sector
The global protective film specialist POLIFILM PROTECTION has developed a protective film with enhanced UV stability for the architectural sector. Conventional films can be damaged by prolonged exposure to strong sunlight and if they are left on a surface for a long time they can become very difficult to remove. This new protective film however has undergone long-term outdoor weathering tests in Florida and Arizona with no deterioration in its protective properties or ease of removal.
Aluminium composite panels and architectural sandwich panels are popular choices for facade construction. However, in order to retain a flawless surface finish until handover of the project to the client, manufacturers apply professional protective films to the panels throughout the manufacturing and construction process.
In regions with intense sunlight and a high UV levels, these films need to be able to withstand exposure to these particularly harsh environmental stresses. Intense UV radiation, in combination with oxygen attacks the molecular chains of plastic, leading to oxidative breakdown of the material causing it to age and become brittle. This results in the protective film becoming fragile and losing its protective properties, ease of removal is greatly reduced hence much more effort would be required. Worse still; the film may only be removed piece by piece.
Target: Market-leading UV resistance
POLIFILM PROTECTION created the solution to this problem of gradual decomposition under UV exposure, by developing a new protective film with exceptional UV resistance. Its polyethylene (PE) carrier film has an innovative composition, containing light-stabilising and UV-absorbing polymer additives. Through a rigorous development process, the protective film specialist has optimised the additive content using a UV-stabilised natural-rubber based glue to give the PE film excellent resistance to UV radiation whilst still maintaining the necessary surface adhesion. The protective film can thus withstand even extreme solar irradiation for long periods of time with no significant ageing of the polymer. After use, it can be removed in a single step without leaving any residue. These characteristics make it unique in the marketplace.
Rigorous 18 month testing in Florida and Arizona
The exceptional UV stability of the protective film has already been proven in outdoor weathering tests in Florida and Arizona. These USA states have some of the highest levels of UV exposure in the world and are renowned reference locations for this type of testing for many industries.
“Even under these high levels of irradiation, after a year and a half these films could still be removed just as easily as when they were brand new” explains Thomas Mähner, head of development of POLIFILM PROTECTION's German production and development site. “Our tests prove that in countries with intense solar radiation, the films can remain on the surface for up to 18 months; in western European climates this can even be up to 24 months. This makes it an ideal solution for a wide range of customers. It reduces the number of complaints and minimises the time and expense needed for reworking. Furthermore, global manufacturers of architectural components now only need a single film solution to use in all their markets because these films can be used anywhere in the world, no matter what the climatic conditions on site".