Defoamers walk a tightrope in paint coating formulation. How much do you know about this chemical balancing act?

The careful control of foam in high performance paint formulation relies on striking the perfect balance to create smooth, even finishes, every time.

Try this short quiz to find out what you know about defoamers — and don’t forget to download the Practical Guide to Defoamers after you’re done.

Good Luck!

Take the test

1

Defoamers reduce foam and avoid foam-formation during the production, application and transport of paint formulations. Having foam present, especially in an industrial setting, is undesirable because it can:
a) Produce an offensive odor
b) Alter the color of the paint or coating
c) Reduce efficiency of high speed operations
d) Create a toxic waste product

That’s correct. You’re off to a blazing start!

Sorry but that isn’t quite right. The correct answer is that foam can reduce the efficiency of high speed operations.

2

True or False. Surfactants destabilize foam in paints and coatings.

Yes. Surfactants, or surface active ingredients, stabilize foam in paints and coatings.

No, surfactants, or surface active ingredients, stabilize foam in paints and coatings.

3

Although there is no single definitive foam theory, it is generally accepted as fact that in order to destroy foam, a defoamer active should:
a) Have the ability to add air bubbles to a liquid and prevent them from rising to the surface
b) Have the ability to penetrate into foam lamellae and to spread effectively on the liquid/gas interface
c) Be thermodynamically unstable
d) Be able to be contained quickly on the gas/liquid interface.
e) None of the above

Yes that’s right!

Sorry but that isn’t quite it. In order to destroy foam, a defoamer active should have the capability to penetrate into foam lamellae and spread effectively on the liquid/gas interface.

4

True or False. Every defoamer is formulated on a tightrope between compatibility and targeted incompatibility.

Yes, nice job. This balance is necessary in order for the defoamer to be sufficiently compatible with the binder.

Incorrect. This balance is necessary in order for the defoamer to be sufficiently compatible with the binder.

5

In silicone-based defoamers for water-based systems, polydimethylsiloxane is an efficient defoaming ingredient because of its:
a) low surface tension
b) spreading capability
c) thermal stability
d) chemical liner
e) all of the above

Right on the money. These characteristics all make polydimethylsiloxane an effective ingredient in this environment.

Well that is one of the right answers, but more accurately e) is correct. All of these characteristics make polydimethylsiloxane an effective ingredient in this environment.

6

True or False. In water-based defoamers, a star-polymer has a 3D star-shaped structure.

Excellent finish! You are really up to speed on defoamer formulation.

The correct answer is True. A star-polymer is a hyper-branched polymer with a 3D star-shaped structure, containing hydrophilic as well as hydrophobic elements.

Thanks for taking the time to complete this quiz. For full defoamer details you can download the Practical Guide to Defoamers below
Download Defoamers white paper

A

B

C

D

Correct
Incorrect

True

False

Correct
Incorrect

A

B

C

D

E

Correct
Incorrect

True

False

Correct
Incorrect

A

B

C

D

E

Correct
Incorrect

True

False

Correct
Incorrect

Recent Articles

A sustainable roof that offers both the lowest lifecycle cost and a low environmental impact
Consumers feel the need for electric-vehicle speed
Driving sustainability by embracing efficient building methods