Solenis, a leading global producer of specialty chemicals, has officially opened its newest customer application R&D laboratories and packaging center of excellence in Mönchengladbach, Germany. The new international technical facility will help drive more sustainable solutions for water-intensive industries and consumer paper packaging.
The labs are equipped with state-of-the-art, instrument-based capabilities for water analysis, microbiology, wastewater treatment, compound analysis, deposit identification, product determination and more. Solenis scientists and R&D teams can also hold in-depth problem-solving and collaboration sessions with customers visiting the facility.
The packaging area allows Solenis experts to simulate and test paper packaging manufacturing processes, treatment programs and paper/paperboard properties. Customers can use the facility to optimize efficiency, performance and costs while improving sustainability for their packaging.
The company is an industry leader in developing innovations such as strength additives for paper and board packaging. It also produces PFAS-free barrier coatings that replace plastics in single-use cups, fast-food packaging, corrugated board and molded fiber products.
With tests available for more than 70 paper packaging and food and beverage packaging characteristics, the facility can evaluate across a range of categories, including strength, sizing, transport phenomena, sustainability and barrier coating performance. Custom testing capabilities are also available.
Overall, the 3,100-square-meter Mönchengladbach technical center includes application and testing equipment such as Rapid-Köthen and dynamic sheet formers, a lotion paper coater, different types of refiners and more. In addition, the facility offers repulping and recycling capabilities, as well as contaminant control assessments. Solenis also plans to add a hot air sealing device.
“Our investment in this new center of excellence is a testament to our ongoing commitment to technology, innovation and sustainability,” said Christian Flocken, Senior Group Leader, Customer Applications Laboratories EMEA. “Customers now have easier, more direct access to our complete range of industry-leading expertise and a full range of chemistry solutions. This collaborative problem-solving approach creates a true partnership, allowing us to more quickly develop eco-friendly solutions that help customers meet their sustainability targets and build a better future for us all.”
The Mönchengladbach facility will also be used to host events, including training, presentations and lab tours for customers from around the globe.
The new center joins the existing main Solenis R&D facility in Wilmington, Delaware, and other R&D facilities in Brazil and China. The company is preparing a $40 million expansion and relocation of the Wilmington site. In addition, Solenis opened a virtual center of excellence last year, allowing customers to interact and collaborate with applications experts remotely and in real time.