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Cost effective solutions to create product differentiation and value


As the world leader in industrial minerals, Imerys has a long established reputation for supplying innovative, high quality products for the coatings formulator. Now, more than ever, having value enhancing and cost effective solutions that meet your quality and performance requirements, whilst helping to differentiate your products, are key requirements for the next generation of coatings.

Imerys produces a wide variety of minerals for the coatings industry from the traditional, high performance hydrous kaolins and calcined kaolins, through carbonates and micas to the highly functional diatomaceous earths. All are produced to the high quality that you would expect from the leading supplier and all are backed by a wealth of coatings technical experience, helping you to get the best performance from your products.


CelTiX™ and Opacilite™ - Opacifying Extenders for High Performance Coatings

Whether you are looking for improved opacity and hiding power to give higher performance paints and allow the application of thinner films whilst maintaining coating performance, or trying to reduce titanium dioxide levels, Imerys’ experience with opacifying extenders can help.


CelTiX™ - Highly functional diatomaceous earth (diatomite)CelTiX™, the highly functional diatomaceous earth, is part of the Imerys Filtration portfolio. This natural product gives unrivalled performance in the highest pvc paints and coatings, providing improved scatter through increased film porosity, whilst maintaining and often improving film mechanics such as scrub resistance and durability. The ability to add “controlled” porosity coupled with the matting efficiency of a diatomaceous earth enables the formulation of cost effective matt paints with excellent film properties and the potential to reduce levels of TiO2 by up to 50%.


Opacilite™, Europe’s leading flash calcined china clayOpacilite™, Europe’s leading flash calcined china clay, provides the paint formulator with a tool to reduce TiO2 by up to 30% when replacing conventional minerals. The discrete, sealed voids within the clay particle provide light scattering without increasing film porosity. Suitable for use over a wide range of pvcs, Opacilite provides opacity for silk and semigloss paints through to high quality matt coatings. When used in “Eco-friendly” coatings Opacilite enables the formulator to reduce their carbon footprint through the partial replacement of TiO2 and helps to retain the high performances demanded by today’s consumers.


PVC Ladders

PVC Ladders


Performance comparison of CelTiX™, Opacilite™ and a standard calcined kaolin at different pvc. The ability of CelTiX™ to reduce the cpvc is clearly demonstrated whilst Opacilite™ maintains a similar cpvc to the standard clays allowing high quality matt and silk paints to be formulated.


Supreme™ and Speswhite™  - Functional Kaolins for Premium Paints

Supreme™ and Speswhite™  - Functional Kaolins for Premium PaintsProduced from Imerys’ high quality, primary kaolin feeds in Cornwall, Supreme™ and Speswhite™ china clays have been designed to give the paint formulator maximum flexibility in the production of coatings of the highest performance. These fine particle size clays help to reduce the crowding of TiO2 in matt and silk paints improving the scattering performance and increasing opacity.


In addition to helping with the efficient use of TiO2, the primary clays also introduce a degree of thixotropy to the coating, giving excellent in-can stability and improved application properties such as reduced paint spatter and increased sag resistance. The structure and make-up of Imerys’ functional kaolins make them ideal for use in modern water based paints where their platy nature and surface charge allow them to disperse easily and yet maintain a high degree of stability and anti-settling in the finished coating. 


Comparison of Extenders in Semi-Gloss Emulsion


Comparison of Extenders in Semi-Gloss Emulsion


Calcium Carbonates – From Fillers to Functional Performance

Imerys produces a wide range of calcium carbonatesImerys produces a wide range of calcium carbonates from the ubiquitous 2µm, 5µm and 10µm dry calcium carbonates fillers to the highly functional, fine particle size carbonates in slurry form. Manufactured from a variety of carefully selected marble, limestone and chalk ores, Imerys’ calcium carbonates are used to produce high quality, cost effective water and solvent borne paints and coatings. The carefully controlled physical properties of Imerys calcium carbonates help to ensure end product quality and consistency.


In addition to the ImerCarb™ range of dry marble calcium carbonates, Imerys also produce a range of carbonate slurries for coatings use. Switching from dry product use to slurries in emulsion paints can help the producer to dramatically reduce costs through energy reduction and improved production capacity.


Imerys Calcium Carbonate Slurries

Imerys Calcium Carbonate Slurries


AquaCarb™ 402 is a high solids carbonate slurry designed for use in place of the traditional 2µm and 5µm dry products whilst maintaining the required matting and mechanical film properties. Imerys also produces the Carbital™ range of finer particle size carbonate slurries for use in silk, semigloss and gloss formulations. Thus, with the AquaCarb™ and Carbital™ products, Imerys enable the paint producer to benefit from the use of slurries across a wide range of coating types.


OpTiMat™ - Outstanding Matting Performance

OpTiMat™ - Outstanding Matting PerformanceThe OpTiMat™ range of matting agents have been designed to give exceptional, cost effective matting performance in the next generation of high performance paint and coatings. OpTiMat™ provides excellent matting properties at a significantly reduced rate of loading compared with other matting agents.

With typical addition levels of between 1 and 3%, the use of OpTiMat™ not only produces a very matting performance (60° and 85° glosses at or below 1 unit are achievable) but also produces relatively smooth surface textures and offers excellent burnish resistance in comparison with coarse carbonates and talcs.


OpTiMat™ Surface Roughness

OpTiMat™ Surface Roughness


The traditional use of blends of coarse carbonates and talcs to produce matt coatings with acceptable scrub and mud crack resistance inevitably leads to rougher film surfaces. These relatively rough surfaces are easy to burnish, leading to increased gloss in localised areas of contact. The structure of OpTiMat™ produces a far more effective “micro roughness” at the coating surface giving high degrees of diffuse light scattering. The unique structure and irregular shape also make OpTiMaT™ difficult to burnish and can help reduce issues with paint touch-up.


ImerCure™  – Performance Additives for UV Coatings

Functional minerals are widely used in the coatings industry to improve physical properties and to reduce cost. However, these benefits are largely denied to manufacturers of clear, UV-cured coatings. Imerys has developed the unique properties of ImerCure™ X10 to make it one of the few materials that can be used in clear coats as an additive to improve mechanical properties such as modulus, strength and hardness without compromising other aspects of the film such as clarity, haze and scratch resistance.


Thanks to its specific particle size and shape distribution, ImerCure™ X10 also contributes to matting control, reducing gloss level as a function of concentration, without impacting the macro surface smoothness of the film. By the partial replacement of expensive UV-curable resin with ImerCure™ X10, formulators can achieve significant cost savings without sacrificing coating performance.


Enhance Film Hardness

Film Harness Improvements with ImerCure™ X10


Mica – Improving Film Properties

Mica – Improving Film PropertiesMica has long been established as the optimum product for improving the mud crack resistance and barrier properties of industrial coatings and high pvc decorative paints. The high aspect ratio, platy structure of Imerys’ micas help to reduce mud cracking by reducing crack propagation within the film. This same structure can also help in industrial coatings where mica can assist the formulator in improving the anti-corrosive properties of the protective films.


The pronounced, platy structure of mica and its apparent alignment and stratification are clearly evident in this micrograph (below) of a fractured paint film. The formation of overlapping plates enables the mica to improve the barrier properties of the film, reduce internal stresses through enhanced flexibility and prevent crack propagation through the coating.


Reinforcement mechanism of MicasWith access to long-term resources throughout the world, Imerys can provide suitable products for a wide variety of end uses, from fine particle size, high performance micas for decorative and industrial use, through to more specialised, larger particle sized micas for plasters and speciality coatings giving textured finishes and novel optical effects. 


For more information on our existing product portfolio and on potential new developments for the coatings and inks markets, please contact us.


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