Postprint version. Published in Biofouling, Volume 15, Issue 1, January 1, 2000, pages 141-150.
NOTE: At the time of publication, the author Dean Wendt was not yet affiliated with Cal Poly.
In response to increased evidence of ecosystem damage by toxic antifouling paints, many researchers have developed nontoxic silicone fouling release coatings. The fouling release capability of these Systems may be improved by adding nonbonding silicone oils to the coating matrix. This idea has been tested by comparing the adhesion strength of hard- and soft-fouling organisms on a cured polydimethylsilicone (PDMS) network to that of the same network containing free polydi-methyldiphenylsilicone (PDMDPS) oil at five exposure sites in North America and Hawaii. Fouling coverage is discussed, together with the bioadhesion data, to emphasize that although these coatings foul the fouling is easily removed. The partitioning of the incorporated oil upon exposure of the coatings to a simulated marine environment containing sediment was determined. Less than 1.1 wt% of the incorporated oil was lost from the coating over one year, and the toxicity of these coatings was shown to be minimal to shrimp and fish. Brush abrasion wear was greater for coatings containing free oil, but the modulus of elasticity was not appreciably decreased by the addition of 10wt% free oil.