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Virtual formulator for the coating manufacture

A virtual formulator (VF) is central to the operation of coating manufacture. Not only does the formulation define the properties of the coating, but it also drives many operating systems in manufacture and purchasing. Furthermore, formulation is a core activity in other industries such as detergents, printing ink, and pharmaceuticals and therefore has wide possibilities for commercial exploitation.

With a VF coating manufacturers can improve the time to market. Consequently, coating formulators can improve their development time for developing new coating formulations. Furthermore, VF reduces the cost of laboratory work, while developing formulations in an in-silico environment.

The functionality of the system is to present a typical liquid paint formulation in either gravimetric or volumetric form and to carry out both analytical and predictive calculations. It will thus be possible to calculate intrinsic paint parameters such as film density and key weight or volume ratios, as well as operational ratios such as the mill-base to make up volume. Predictive calculations would include derived properties such as opacity and viscosity.

Formulations are derived from two main sources, either a library of existing formulations, which are categorised using a simple expert system, or created from a generic rules base. In both cases users have the capability to store and retrieve their own formulations. Formulations can be modified and re-saved to explore alternative formulation options and strategies.

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