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Coatings Group

Photo of Coatings Laboratory Coatings Laboratory at MERL

Salt Water Bath in Coatings Laboratory
Photo of Steel Coupons Coated and Drying Coated Steel Coupons Hanging Up to Dry


Technical Services

We are experienced team leaders for a variety of Reclamation projects. We provide guide specifications for coatings in CSI format for Reclamation. Our specifications are written to ensure that the best materials for the service environment and application conditions are used. In addition, we provide technical advice on selecting, applying, monitoring, and inspecting paints and protective coatings. Our consulting services to Reclamation's Regional, Area, and Project Offices include:

  • Advice for environmentally acceptable, low cost, durable coating systems as well as the processes needed to:

    • Maintain and/or replace old coatings
    • Rejuvenate existing, deteriorated coatings on Reclamation facilities
    • Apply coatings to new facilities
  • Guidelines for removing deteriorated coatings safely and in an environmentally acceptable way.

  • Assistance with complying with changes in environmental and worker safety regulations of the protective coatings industry and Reclamation-specific guidelines associated with these regulations.

  • Field inspections by certified personnel

    • NACE coatings inspectors
    • SPRAT certified rope access
    • Ultrasonic thickness testing and other non-destructive evaluation (NDE) methods

Research Projects

We conduct Reclamation-relevant applied research projects to evaluate new coating systems and ensure that the best coatings products are used for Reclamation projects. Our laboratory capabilities and current projects include:

  • Complete evaluation laboratory and accelerated weathering cabinets
  • Perform numerous ASTM and Non-ASTM tests
  • Conduct comprehensive evaluation of polymer materials
  • Conduct comprehensive research, including:

    • Work to evaluate coatings for zebra/quagga mussel control
    • New age metallized coatings
    • Erosion resistant coatings for severe erosion applications
    • Pipeline coatings
    • Electrochemical Impedance Spectroscopy (EIS) to estimate coating service life

Last updated: 8/22/14