Zirconia nanoparticles synthesized by the sol–gel method were surface modified by the coupling agent, 3-(trimethoxy silyl) propyl methacrylate (MSMA), containing C=C bonds. These particles were then UV-cured together with the hexa-functional monomer, dipentaethritol hexaacrylate (DPHA), to prepare transparent coatings that exhibited antistatic property on plastic substrates. FTIR and solid 29SiNMR were used to analyze the chemical bonds in the formed particles and coatings. Dynamic light scattering measurement of the modified ZrO2 sol indicated a relatively small particle size distribution, 1.5–20 nm, with a maximum intensity at ~5.5 nm. These particles dispersed uniformly in the organic host, poly(DPHA), as was manifested by the high resolution SEM images of the coatings. Antistatic performance of the coatings was examined based on the surface resistivity measurements. A resistivity of 7.74 × 108 Ω/□ suited to common antistatic applications could be attained for coatings containing 10% inorganic component. In addition, all of the prepared coatings were very hard with pencil hardness 7H–8H, and they attached perfectly to the PMMA substrate according to the peel test.
Journal of Coatings Technology and Research 10(1), pp.73-78