AkzoNobel is investing almost €10 million to further boost the innovative power of the UK site where performance coatings which now protect many of the world’s iconic structures and ships were first developed.
A fire protection testing laboratory and a polymer lab for powder coatings are being added to the existing R&D infrastructure at the company’s Felling site in north-east England, which pioneered products used on landmarks such as Sydney Harbor Bridge, the London Eye, the Olympic Water Cube in Beijing and famous vessels including the Queen Mary 2 and the HMS Ark Royal.
The investment will help further transform the location into a research hub focused on innovation and the development of new performance coatings technology.
“The fact that we are continuing to invest despite the current economic climate gives a clear indication of the importance we attach to advancing our technological expertise,” explains Leif Darner, AkzoNobel’s Board member responsible for Performance Coatings.
“The new facilities will provide us with a state-of-the-art center of excellence which will significantly improve our ability to develop and bring new products to market.”
Due to be completed early next year, the testing lab will be used by the company’s Marine & Protective Coatings (M&PC) business in its development of fire protection coatings. This particular market is growing rapidly due to increasingly stringent fire protection regulations worldwide, with demand expected to double by 2018.
The new polymer lab will allow AkzoNobel Powder Coatings to optimize the 20 years of experience it has in building and commercializing polymers at Felling. Expected to be completed by the end of the year, the facility will enable researchers to handle and develop new materials and will also include scale-up capability and an application line.
Felling – which currently employs more than 260 R&D employees – is already established as a key AkzoNobel innovation center. Existing facilities include a Marine and Yacht lab and a Central Analytical and Technology Center operated by the M&PC business, while Powder Coatings already has labs dedicated to color science, effects science and application science, including the ground-breaking Particle Management Technology.
PureCycle’s First Plastic Recycling Plant in Europe located in Antwerp-Brugges NextGen District, Belgium
The new plant is expected to have an annual capacity of 59,000 metric tons, with opportunities to expand operations with an anticipated total capacity of approximately 240,000 metric tons per year.
CABB site in Kokkola, Finland: vital growth with a focus on sustainability
CABB Group will invest more than EUR 50 million by 2025 in expanding its facilities at its site in Kokkola, Finland. A new office building is also being constructed. Special attention is being pai...
TotalEnergies commissions BioBéarn, the country’s largest anaerobic digestion unit in Mourenx, France
The project will convert 220,000 metric tons of organic waste into 200,000 metric tons per year of digestate, a natural fertilizer, and 160 GWh of biomethane. This new unit allowing to avoid the em...
Borealis, committed to lead the transformation to a circular economy, acquires a majority stake in Renasci’s Ostend facility, Belgium
Borealis increases its financial investment in Renasci to acquire a majority shareholding position of 50.01%. Investment will provide Borealis increasing access to chemically recycled feedstock, st...