TMC temperature indicating paints comprise a range of different coatings which are based on mostly inorganic colour changing pigments dispersed in solvent based solutions of acrylic and / or silicon based polymers. They are useful in determining heat patterns and showing temperature distribution by showing changes in colour.
They are widely used in industrial applications with single colour change paints typically used to show heat exposure events. Used as a warning coating on insulated vessels they can be used to indicate where thermal linings breakdown and surface temperatures rise. In the motor industry they can show when components have exceeded certain temperature limits.
Paints with multiple colour changes are commonly used in the aerospace industry for thermal mapping of jet engine components with paints suited for combustors and turbine work at temperatures in excess of 1000ºC.
The different paints are based on a range of different chemicals and many of these are based on heavy metals such as lead, cobalt and chromates. This means some are restricted to specialist scientific testing and research work. Safety Data Sheets provide identification of any hazardous components.