The present investigation analyzes the deformation response of electrostatically sprayed epoxy-polyester powder coatings by 'in situ' micro-mechanical tests. The characterization of the performance of the coatings was carried out by micro-scale scratching, by varying the indenter type, the applied load and the sliding speed. The tests were carried out on polymeric coatings deposited on as-received, micro and macro-corrugated AISI 304 stainless steel substrates and 'rigidly adhered' to them. Further tests were performed on 'free-standing' coatings, that is, on the as-received metal substrates pre-coated with an intermediate layer of silicon-based heat curable release coating. Experimental data allow us to evaluate the influence of the contact conditions between substrate and indenter and the role of the loading conditions on the scratch and penetration resistance of the epoxy-polyester coatings. The different responses of the polymeric coatings when deposited on untreated or pre-treated substrates as well as on an intermediate layer of release coating, contribute to a better understanding of the intrinsic roles of the polymeric material and substrate as well as the influence of the interfacial adhesion between coating and substrate. © 2010 Elsevier B.V.
Barletta, M., Gisario, A. (2011). The role of the substrate in micro-scale scratching of epoxy-polyester films. APPLIED SURFACE SCIENCE, 257(9), 4449-4463 [10.1016/j.apsusc.2010.12.090].