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Emerging Scanning Technologies:
Soy-Based Roof Coating

PATH Roadmap Applicability:


Advanced Panelized Construction


Energy Efficiency in Existing Homes


Information Technology


Whole House & Building Process Redesign

Contractors Applying Soy-Based Roof Coating
Twin contractors rolling out Natural Bitumen
Jacket onto roof. Photo Courtesy of Niemann Labs


A Chicago-based manufacturer is finding that a soy-based coating is key to keeping cool. Niemann Laboratories, with a project funded by the soybean checkoff through the United Soybean Board, is researching a soy-based applied roofing coating, Natural Bitumen Jacket, that provides relief from intense sunlight. 

Natural Bitumen Jacket is a bright white, soybean oil-based product that is applied over bituminous substrates on flat-roofed buildings and has a rapid cure time. By reducing the amount of energy absorbed from intense sunlight, the use of air conditioning units to offset absorbed heat is also reduced. This has allowed Niemann Labs to gain ENERGY STAR approval, an Environmental Protection Agency-backed standard identifying highly efficient products and superior energy performance. 

The resin system is formulated to provide significantly greater life and durability compared to elastomeric acrylic products. It is 100 percent waterproof and, because of its excellent adhesion and flexibility, prevents UV-rays from drying and cracking roofing material, which can add up to five years to the life of a roof. 

With low volatile organic compounds and a high solids content, Natural Bitumen Jacket provides excellent performance while providing environmental safety.  The product also requires no mixing and can be applied by brush, roller or spray at approximately 2 to 3 gallons per 100 square feet for maximum effectiveness. 

Application to PATH Roadmaps

Energy and environmental efficiency are key drivers behind the PATH program. Energy efficiency is called out specifically in the existing homes roadmap. An effective barrier to UV rays from the sun can increase the durability of roofing products while reducing the amount of unwanted heat gain that increases HVAC loads. 

Current Status of Technology

The soy based roof coating has been developed as a prototype product ready for commercialization. It is currently getting field evaluation analyses from builders, roofers, and applicators in several markets to determine training requirements necessary to accompany market introduction.

Contact Information

Niemann Labs
Green Grip Products
7968 South Madison St.
Burr Ridge, IL 60527
Phone:  (866) 876-4747

Content updated on 4/14/2003

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