Isocyanate-Free Polyurethane Coating

EPA Contract Number: EPD17025
Title: Isocyanate-Free Polyurethane Coating
Investigators: Bolskar, Robert D
Small Business: TDA Research Inc.
EPA Contact: Hahn, Intaek
Phase: II
Project Period: March 1, 2017 through February 28, 2019
Project Amount: $300,000
RFA: Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) - Phase II (2016) Recipients Lists
Research Category: Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) , SBIR - Water


Polyurethanes are now made by reacting two components, one of which has toxic isocyanate groups. Isocyanates are especially hazardous to workers that spray-apply polyurethane paints. Researchers have developed less hazardous ways to make polyurethane, but they have poor performance, cure too slowly or are too expensive. In this project, TDA Research, Inc. (TDA) will develop new non-isocyanate two-part polyurethane chemistry to eliminate isocyanate toxicity and health and safety problems of current polyurethanes. TDA’s chemistry is simple to use, does not produce volatile organic chemical (VOC) emissions, and should lower the cost of applying polyurethane coatings. Most importantly, the composition of the coatings will be identical to those used today, but no isocyanates will be used to form them. TDA’s chemistry can potentially provide an isocyanate-free drop-in replacement for many existing two-part polyurethanes. Urethane coatings are one of the fastest-growing sectors of the paint and coatings industry. The 2015 world market for polyurethane military aerospace coatings is $316 million, and the world market including automotive refinish coatings and industrial coatings exceeds several billion. In Phase II TDA will optimize the precursor chemistry and polymerization processes, and demonstrate that our isocyanate-free polyurethanes are suitable replacements for today’s high performance paints. 

Supplemental Keywords:

polyurethane, polyurethane coatings, toxic chemicals, paints and coatings

Progress and Final Reports:

  • Final Report

  • SBIR Phase I:

    Isocyanate-Free Polyurethane Coatings  | Final Report