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Clariant Innovation Center at Industriepark Höchst, Frankfurt—Laying the Cornerstone.
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Clariant Innovation Center at Industriepark Höchst, Frankfurt—Atrium.
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Clariant Innovation Center at Industriepark Höchst, Frankfurt—Building Work.
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Clariant Innovation Center at Industriepark Höchst, Frankfurt—Outside, Artist's Impression.
Clariant, a world leader in specialty chemicals, is today officially opening its new €100 million Clariant Innovation Center (CIC) in Frankfurt, Germany. The company’s new global hub for research and development (R&D) is based at the “Industriepark Höchst.” It will be the home of Clariant’s competence centres in chemical research and process technology as well as application laboratories for several of the company's business units and state-of-the art analytical laboratories. The CIC will also house the departments for intellectual property management and new business development. As the corporation’s global hub, the CIC will ensure the coordination of Clariant’s world-wide R&D network, which includes centres across Europe, North America, Brazil, Japan, India and China.
Located at Clariant’s largest manufacturing site, the CIC will benefit from the excellent infrastructure as well as industrial and academic links offered by the Rhein-Main region. The new facility covers a total surface area of 36,000 square meters (387,500 sq ft) and will house around 500 employees from R&D and supporting business and administrative functions. The modern, open-plan building was designed by Düsseldorf architects Hentrich-Petschnigg & Partner. It features a mix of open workspaces, offices and laboratories to foster the exchange of ideas among employees as well as with visiting partners from industry and academia.
To mark the occasion, Clariant is welcoming guests from the regional government, industry, academic institutions, and the local community. Clariant CEO Hariolf Kottmann, executive committee member Christian Kohlpaintner and CTO Martin Vollmer are providing insight into the future R&D areas of focus and individual market segments to be coordinated from the CIC.
“Advances in chemistry are necessary to help our customers respond to society’s trends and challenges. We therefore see fostering R&D and Innovation as one of the four strategic pillars defining the future path of our company,” said CEO Hariolf Kottmann. “Experience shows that innovation results from open communication and an on-going exchange of ideas which often sparks further ideas and solutions. The new CIC will facilitate this, providing a stimulating environment fostering creativity and know-how exchange. We are delighted to share this important step for Clariant with our distinguished guests today.”
“The CIC will open up a new dimension in the way Clariant connects its R&D departments internally as well as how Clariant engages external partners”, said Martin Vollmer, CTO. “Within the CIC we have established an Open Lab in order to work on innovation projects with customers and other development partners under one roof. This will enable us to translate market needs into innovative product solutions in a fast, flexible and efficient way.”
On-Trend Healthcare Colorants Highlighted at K
At the K show, the world's largest plastics trade exhibition, which took place in Düsseldorf in October, Clariant proved that it is possible to combine creativity with enhanced protection and processing performance for healthcare applications with its sector-dedicated MEVOPUR brand of polymer and packaging solutions. MEVOPUR colour and performance additives are produced at three ISO13485 certified and dedicated production facilities located in the USA, Europe and Asia to ensure "controlled, consistent and compliant" innovations for the industry.
Clariant’s USP/ISO pre-evaluated raw materials help meet regulatory needs and support the creation of attractive pharmaceutical packaging, better functioning devices, and greater production efficiency. Highlights demonstrating these attributes during the K show included laser marking and welding additives for faster and reliable processing without solvent residues. Examples of a new concept for extrusion blow moulded (EBM) pharmaceutical bottles featuring colours inspired by Clariant's colour trend outlook publication, ColorForward for 2013 and 2014, were unveiled for the first time, demonstrating how regulatory concerns do not have to be a barrier to developing attractive colours for pharmaceutical packaging.
Clariant’s ColorWorks design centres have for many years been at the leading edge of creating tools that help to add to designers’ ideas, shortening the time to market, in colours that are practical to process in plastics. In addition, each year the ColorForward tool is published; a dedicated colour forecasting guide in the plastics industry that appeals to people’s emotions and psychology. Under the theme ‘If We Help Control You Can be Creative’, Clariant brings together the skills and knowledge of the global ColorWorks and the dedicated medical and pharmaceutical teams. The biological evaluations using protocols USP23 parts 87, 88 and ISO10993-1, carried out on raw materials used for the MEVOPUR product range means colours can be selected already anticipating the regulatory and change control needs. Pre-tested colours also help reduce the risk of extractables and leachables. On show at K were concepts demonstrating single layer EBM bottles and also dual layer with external colour and a standard pharmaceutical white inner layer.
MEVOPUR performance materials protecting and enhancing healthcare products include: non-migratory additives to reduce friction and actuation in closures, drug delivery devices and catheters; sorbitol-free clarity enhancers for polypropylene (PP); additives can help to protect against polymer property degradation and colour shifts during gamma and e-beam sterilisation; and preservative-free solutions can help to reduce transmission of bacteria in devices.
In addition to the processing enhancements offered by laser marking and welding additives, processors can take advantage of MEVOPUR nucleation technology for polyolefins to reduce costs by shortening cycle times and material content, and Clariant will show results of internal studies on EBM bottles. In the study, wall-sections were reduced by up to 12% with no reduction in bottle strength demonstrated by top loading tests. Additional benefits of the technology can be demonstrated to improve ovality and shrinkage control for better end-product quality.
“MEVOPUR trusted colour and performance materials give manufacturers of medical devices and pharma packaging the capability and confidence to explore the use of colours and technologies such as laser marking and laser welding to improve the overall user experience of their products,” comments Hans Bohnen, Head of Business Unit Masterbatches, Clariant. “At the same time our range includes processing enhancing solutions that improve productivity and quality; backed with the reassurance of three ISO13485 certified and dedicated production facilities and a global team of dedicated experts 100% focused on the needs of the healthcare industry.”