Unprotected polymer surface coatings, including those made of otherwise durable materials like polyesters, undergo rapid degradation when exposed to light due to the effect of energetic photons with wavelengths in the near ultraviolet (NUV) region. Conventional strategies to extend the lifetime of these polymers involve the incorporation of inorganic UV absorbers such as carbon black and titanium dioxide. This has a detrimental effect on the cosmetic appearance of these polymers. The NUV-reflective coatings described in this invention allows the mitigation of polymer photodegradation with minimal impact on appearance.
Coincidentally, the NUV radiation responsible for photodegradation of polymers is also involved in animal communication. This allows the proposed NUV-reflective coatings to address a multitude of problems caused by animal collisions with buildings and aircraft by emitting animal-repelling NUV signals.