The integration of engineered nanoparticles (ENPs) in façade coatings may lead to improved or new functionalities during their life cycle and may bring several sustainable advantages; they may replace hazardous substances, prolong the life time of façade coatings and they can be advantageously used for air purification, thermal insulation, self-cleaning, and other. Nevertheless, the use of nanomaterials in this economic area can grow dynamically only if the safety of humans and the environment is satisfactorily resolved.
NanoHouse aimed promoting a responsible and sustainable inclusion of nanomaterials in the paint industry through a Life Cycle Thinking (LCT) approach and understand whether the potential benefits of three façade coatings containing different ENPs (nano-TiO2, nano-SiO2, and nano-Ag) can outbalance their potential risks for human health and the environment during the whole product life cycle.
Together with partners from industry and research° experiments on the unintended release of ENP from facade coatings were done. An innovative aspect was to investigate the hazard and behaviour of aged ENP and compared them to pristine ENP. Additionally a survey on benefits and risks and a respective LCA was performed.
The research leading to these results has received funding from the European Union Seventh Framework Programme (FP7/2010-2013) under grant agreement n° 247810
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° Akzo Nobel Coatings, CEA France, GFC Chimica, KU Leuven, Materis, PPG Industries, UJF-ISTerre Grenoble, Venezia Ricerche and Empa (Analytical Chemistry, Technology & Society Lab, Materials-Biology Interactions Lab, Applied Wood Materials Lab, Building Science & Technology Lab)