Coating from UConn is made of nanosheets in a polymer matrix that makes it nearly impermeable to air and other gases.


  • Stronger
  • Eco-friendly
  • Scalable


  • Electronics
  • Packaging
  • Consumer goods

UN Sustainable Development Goals Addressed

  • Goal 9: Industry Innovation & Infrastructure

  • Goal 12: Responsible Production & Consumption

The Challenge

Many electronics are susceptible to permanent damage from moisture. For example, the small components within cellphones require a waterproof barrier for protection. Making these small barriers is challenging, increasing the cost of the devices.

Innovation Details

The coating is made of a high concentration of nanosheets within a matrix. To make the coating, the nanosheets are pre-arranged in a series and the polymer flows between the sheets to lock them in place. The material forms the shape of the substrate it is laid on. It was shown to be 60 percent stronger than stainless steel and can be used on a variety of materials to protect from both fire and water.

Biomimicry Story

Nacre, or mother of pearl,  forms the iridescent inner layer of the shells of some molluscs. It is a natural composite of plates of aragonite (a form of calcium carbonate) and natural polymers that coil around and through the plates. The polymer holds the plates together while allowing them to slip from side to side under stress, enabling the nacre to be both strong and flexible.