Conference Agenda

Digitization, innovation, sustainability: our Covestro experts will be talking about these crucial topics which are changing the chemical industry landscape. Join us to hear our point of view and take the chance to talk to our speakers in person!

Day 1 - 29 May 2018

10:45 – PUR 4.0 – Digital developments for improved PU production

PUR 4.0 – Digital developments for improved PU production

Speaker: Dr. Ulrich Liman

Room: EURO Room
Time: 10:45

Management of data has been the basis of science for a long time. With recent developments in digital technology and higher computational calculation speeds a new world of opportunities is also generating high expectations in the PU industry. The combination of chemistry and processing determines the properties of PU applications in a more complex manner than the traditional processing of thermoplastics (e.g. injection molding).

The use of modern data management tools is a great chance to improve PU production. Based on examples from existing RIM data management such as Baycap®, we developed algorithms for continuous foam production to optimize climate correction for properties such as foam density or hardness. This forms the basis for more advanced digital systems and mold-fill simulations in PU production. Through improved collaboration between PU chemistry, processing and application technology we will be able to work together even more closely to achieve our common goal of developing a sustainable PU market.

An important aspect is finding and developing algorithms that show the right causality to the addressed problem that has to be solved. The algorithms have to differentiate between possible operative relationships for processing PU from artefacts based on an interaction of complex data. Given the new tools now available, we can see a faster way to match the requirements for new innovative raw materials that comply with narrower specifications, with formulations tailored to the specifications of the application. This will also result in less waste and lower costs, as well as fewer production downtimes and variations due to different PU raw materials suppliers.

15:15 – New solutions for viscoelastic and high-resilience flexible foam

New solutions for viscoelastic and high-resilience flexible foam

Speaker: Dr. Lutz Brassat

Room: EURO Room
Time: 15:15

Covestro is continuously improving its portfolio of raw materials to allow customers to meet the increasing demands made on their products, such as enhanced durability and low emissions.

In this paper we will focus on new polyurethane raw materials for comfort applications, such as high-resilience foams and viscoelastic foams. Among those presented will be new MDI grades for HR and VE foam.

16:30 – Novel innovative fast-demolding technology for insulating foams in appliances

Novel innovative fast-demolding technology for insulating foams in appliances

Speaker: Dr. Reinhard Albers

Room: FLORIN Room
Time: 16:30

In the highly competitive Appliance industry, OEMs must master cost, quality and productivity challenges. In particular, appliance manufacturers are looking for solutions to reduce the cycle times for the production of refrigerators in order to increase capacity utilization of their plants.

Covestro has developed customized polyurethane foam technology based on new polyol and isocyanate chemistries. Our innovative fast-demolding foam technology allows OEMs to produce refrigerators and freezers with outstanding production efficiency without compromising energy efficiency and other important quality features. In this way innovative solutions developed at Covestro are helping the appliance industry find the solutions for their most critical challenges.

The innovative solutions will now be introduced to the market place and reflect Covestro’s commitment to improve its offerings to society and constantly reduce its impact on the environment, while continuing to deliver value to shareholders.

This overview will describe our technical approaches and outline recent results from evaluations of our novel fast-demolding foam technology.

Day 2 - 30 May 2018

10:30 – Innovation for sustainable growth

Innovation for sustainable growth

Speaker: Hermann-Josef Dörholt

Room: EURO Room
Time: 10:30

For Covestro, innovation is the necessary foundation for long-term and sustainable growth.

Moreover, innovation is needed to address global challenges, such as the growing world population, urbanization, increasing mobility, climate change and the conservation of fossil resources.

Innovation is also a key factor in the creation of value, for example growth, higher margins or some benefit to society or the environment – and ideally a combination of all of them.

We distinguish between four types of innovation based on the area of application: product- and process-centric (R&D-based) innovation; market-centric innovation; functional innovation (focused on internal processes); and model-centric innovation. All of them are equally important.

Following on from our last UTECH motto “Do you think in life cycles?”, this paper will demonstrate how all four types of innovation at Covestro have a positive and sustainable impact on the life cycle of polyurethanes.

15:45 – Broadening the raw material base of polyurethanes: new developments with CO₂ & pFA

Broadening the raw material base of polyurethanes: new developments with CO₂ & pFA

Speakers: Dr. Christoph Gürtler, Dr. Jochen Norwig
Room: EURO Room
Time: 15:45

You can’t substitute traditional polyurethane building blocks by more sustainable solutions – why not? Covestro is investigating new ways of making polyurethanes: the use of CO₂ in elastomers or paraformaldehyde in polyols are just two examples of current developments at Covestro.

16:15 – Desmocomp® Raw materials for pultruded composites with extreme UV, chemical and weathering resistance

Desmocomp® Raw materials for pultruded composites with extreme UV, chemical and weathering resistance

Speaker: Dr. Stamo Mentizi
Time: 16:15

Pultrusion is a major manufacturing technology for the continuous production of fiber-reinforced plastics with structural shapes. The application areas of semi-finished pultruded parts can be found in various industries, ranging from building and construction through automotive to renewable energy.

To fully exploit the advantages of fiber-reinforced plastics, it is essential to combine the appropriate fiber with the best possible matrix material. Besides conventional matrices such as epoxies or unsaturated polyesters, polyurethane materials are steadily gaining importance in the manufacturing of lightweight materials.

Polyurethane materials stand out for their very high reactivity, tunable processing viscosity, and the possibility to construct customized component properties. The resin wets the glass fibers very effectively, forming a very durable but lightweight composite with high stability and stiffness. The long-term physical properties of the current polyurethane matrix systems are impressive for indoor applications that are not subject to meteorological influences. However, there are also numerous applications for composites where structural elements are exposed to sunlight or extreme weathering conditions and therefore require protection measures.

To protect fiber-reinforced plastics from a broad variety of environmental influences, Covestro is developing new, cost-optimized processes and products for manufacturing lightweight materials. Covestro’s brand-new development for fiber-reinforced plastics, Desmocomp®, is a matrix material based on aliphatic polyurethane and designed primarily for exterior applications. Its excellent weathering and UV resistance protects the composites from environmental influences and displays excellent resistance against chemicals. In addition, our new cost-optimized processing may open the door to new composite applications based on aliphatic PU matrix.

Although aliphatic polyurethanes are known to have better weathering characteristics than other polymeric resins, in many cases simply replacing the standard resins with aliphatic polyurethanes can lead to inferior physical properties. There is thus a need for improved formulations designed for the pultrusion process in order to manufacture composites with both excellent physical properties and outstanding weathering stability. Covestro took up this challenge and now is proud to introduce Desmocomp® as a new solution for fiber-reinforced plastics based on aliphatic polyurethane.