Extraordinary polyurethane applications presented

FSK honours internationally renowned ideas as innovations
From left to right: Jens-Jürgen Härtel (FSK Vice Chairman, Volkswagen AG) with winners of the FSK Innovation Award Polyurethane 2015: Mara Freigang (Technical College Mainz), Peter Schneider (IKV Aachen), Armin Nöthe (BASF), Dr. Frank Prissok (BASF), Sascha Mattfeld (BASF), Thomas Michaelis (Covestro), Stefan Bichler (Adidas), Dr. Hubert Ehbing (Covestro) and Albrecht Manderscheid (FSK-Chairman of the Board, CANNON Germany) in front of the polyurethane rigid foam cabin of the “Solar Impulse”. In the background: the penny farthing “1865 E-Velocipede” by BASF. (PresseBox) (Stuttgart, ) To fly without fuel or to become the football world champion without leather and to transpose a 150 year old bicycle into modern times, these were all reasons to be honoured with the FSK Polyurethane Innovation Award 2015. During the Specialist Conference Polyurethane 2015 the Specialist Association Foamed Plastics and Polyurethanes distinguished innovative product ideas and polyurethane applications, such as the cabin of "Solar Impulse" the aircraft flying around the world on solar energy.
The cabin had to be lightweight and well insulated while combining vital mechanical properties such as stability. To accomplish this Covestro developed a high performance, polyurethane rigid foam that fulfils all of these properties. With the solar plane, not only a new application was discovered, but it was also possible to incorporate the findings from this foam innovation into existing PUR rigid foam applications (construction, insulation, refrigerators, refrigerated vehicles, etc.).

The goal behind the concept of the BASF "Penny-farthing 1865 E-Velocipede", built of modern high-performance materials and plastics, was quite similar. For the very first time an expanded thermoplastic polyurethane (ETPU) was developed for the bicycle tires. Unlike conventional air hose tires this abrasion-resistant, full-PUR-tire can no longer run flat because of losing air.
Just recently this material is being used for soles in high-performance sports footwear and in technical applications, such as for securing loads. Extreme impact resistance and excellent damping properties with minimal weight make ETPU an extremely interesting and promising material for numerous applications.
For the "Brazuca 2014" the FSK distinguishes the companies Adidas and Covestro for the long term development of polyurethane footballs, which have completely replaced leather. Ideal properties such as low weight, flight characteristics and the surface have not only contributed to a high level in sports and set international standards, but also play a positive role in terms of health and safety. Injuries caused by a leather football saturated with water or from hard seams are no longer an issue with today’s polyurethane footballs. Not only a modular storage system made of polyurethane, in form of wall panels that look like barnacles created by Mara Freigang a student from Mainz, received a student award but also doctoral student Peter Schneider from the IKV in Aachen for his research.
In a pultrusion procedure Peter Schneider developed an interesting process with sandwich structure and pultruded polyurethane profiles with a hard PUR foam core, which enables new applications and at the same time saves costs.

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Fachverband Schaumkunststoffe und Polyurethane e.V.
Stammheimer Str. 35
D-70435 Stuttgart
Dr. Schloz

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