The Innovation Award Polyurethane 1998
Jörg Heuser from Darmstadt is so enthusiastic about rowing that he wants as many people as possible to know about this sport. The industrial designer's thesis, from 1998, focused on developing a seaworthy rowing boat that is so sturdy and safe, and that even inexperienced persons could row across lakes and down rivers.
The Innovation Award Polyurethane 2000
"I like waiting" was Anja Oenning's explanation for her submittal, her final year project "Nachthaube and Doppelwhopper“(Nightcap and Double Whopper) for the study path product design in the year 2000. It was set up at the KulturBahnhof Kassel as an opportunity to rest, watch and just take a break at a central meeting point.
"Stunt kite flying" in summer was Maik van de Braak and Alexander Schau's inspiration for the "snow buggy". This buggy would give persons who enjoy stunt kite flying the opportunity to enjoy their sport in winter, in the snow, using an alternative means of transportation driven by wind. Unfortunately, the draft remained an interesting idea.
At the Institute for Plastics Processing at the RWTH Aachen, Ingo Kleba, Roland Szasz and Inge Gabriel-Jürgens developed a method for producing PUR foam hollow parts. One example for usage are PUR foam insulated thermoses which, because of their specific, blow moulded exteriors, must be manufactured from the outside to the inside, so that an undercut foam hollow body can develop. Dr. Kleba is now managing director at Rühl Puromer GmbH
The human brain wants to be challenged, throughout its entire life. Simon Croe, who developed the creative building-bricks "Creon", was also aware of this. This set promotes creative and mathematical skills as well as spatial understanding, dexterity, patience and imagination. It is a comprehensive further development of traditional building blocks plus a kind of manual, mathematical toy.
Thomas Hofmann's "ATOS", which was developed in cooperation with GOM, is a device for high precision optical surface measurement and is easy to carry and use. The measuring head is mounted on a tripod and connected to a PC for the data analysis.
It is produced by polyurethane injection moulding. "ATOS" was already built at an earlier date, but was completely revised by Mr. Hoffmann in 1999.
Bernd Rosenthal developed the "MSI VEGA", a device for measuring exhaust gases. It combines modern, user-friendly technology with robust mechanics and unites several functions in one device. While in the past a variety of measuring devices were required, which still only provided results in the aftermath, the "MSI VEGA" provides all variables in real time.
The Innovation Award Polyurethane 2002
For his "seat-information-combination for indoors and outdoors", Joost Woischnik was mostly inspired by the diverse properties of the material polyurethane. For his piece of furniture he used a variety of PUR: it is made of PUR rigid foam and soft foam, PUR deep coating, PUR varnish and PUR surface protection...! Woischnik experimented successfully with PUR.
Michael Höse, Carmelo di Termini, Christopher Bronsart von Schellendorff and Barbara Schulz created a chair that at first glance does not look like a chair. Only in its function does the seating furniture, 'rewind.chair', demonstrate what it can do: its polyurethane soft foam cushion adapts to the shape of the person resting in it.
Powdery, melt adhesives made from polyurethane are often used in the textile and automotive industry.
To do so PUR is pulverized a very laborious process. The former student and current engineer Andreas Kilzer developed the PGSS process, which, in a remarkably innovative manner, simplifies the process of pulverizing.
The Smart Crossblade is the first series automobile whose chassis was, in series, almost completely equipped with fitted polyurethane parts. The PUR body parts meet the demanding standards of design and shape in the automotive industry. From the bumpers to the front end, up to the roll bar all parts were pushed to series production within six months.
PUR residue is much too valuable to be thrown away. The Regra Kunststofftechnik GmbH in Pirmasens has realised the large-scale production of polyurethane from PUR residue. A recycling plant was developed and built, specifically for the raw material recycling of rigid, semi-rigid and soft polyurethane residue.
Once polyurethane residue is recycled nothing stands in the way of it being reused. The company PURcycl in Neuburg a.d. Donau developed PUReclat from PUR scrap. This recycling material is used to manufacture multilayer compound boards, moulded parts and structural elements. The finished sandwich board is installed as insulation panels in vehicles.
The fact that polyurethane meets highest demands is demonstrated by the impella base station by Impella Cardiotechnik AG in cooperation with ISATEC Engineering GmbH and UnnaPUR Kunststofftechnik GmbH. This functional housing for intensive care medicine provides a high material quality and functionality, protection against moisture and fire, good ventilation and also fulfils licensing criteria for international markets.
The Innovation Award Polyurethane 2004
Sweet dreams are guaranteed with the slumber helmet. This is not something for the lazy. Studies have long proven greater concentration levels are achieved after a short lunch nap, even at the workplace. The helmet is made of soft foam and beds the head softly even on the hardest desktop, while minimizing noise from restless colleagues.
Tanja Seiners lightweight helmet is breathable and promotes restful breaks in public places - for more energy when you wake up.
Anyone who has ever broken an arm or a leg knows the problem: along with everything else, the bandage is uncomfortable, heavy, the skin sweats and itches. In addition, it is very difficult for the doctor to monitor the healing process, there is the risk of thrombosis and when it is opened with a saw, there is a risk of injury.
Diana Hartz developed an innovative approach to extremities retention. It ensures breathability, low bulk, quick and harmless application and removal, and improved monitoring of the healing process as well as reduced risk of thrombosis and such.
The company Stankiewicz developed a process for spraying on plastic layers. With this method, the filler can be distributed much better and more efficiently. A more stable geometry, improved airflow and turbulence damping leads to higher densities with very low density and border tolerances.
With this technique, it is also possible to back foam the same mould, thus reducing tool costs, material, weight and logistics.
Sound without a box? When the company Siemens was working on a digital technology for a completely new type of loudspeaker and acoustic system, the only thing missing was a soundboard, which would allow unknown applications and meet high quality demands. The company Puren took on the challenge and developed the purSonic-Soundboards – with a low weight, high stability, moisture resistance and suitable as carrier for all imaginable cover layers such as wood, wallpaper or tiles. Particularly important of course: finest sound, for both music and the spoken word.
Not all housings are the same: Why use metal when polyurethane is available? BRAN+LUEBBE GmbH and HÜBNER GmbH created a case for an analysis device that analyses liquid materials and combined design and functionality.
The device is used in laboratories and sewage treatment plants as well as in institutes and for research.
The Innovation Award Polyurethane 2006
Especially when times are very hectic, concentration on the job can easily slip. Spatial shortcomings can be mitigated: The Flexx partition wall made of upholstery foam, by Erik Wend, is characterised mainly by its excellent flexibility and very good sound absorption.
The flexible PUR soft foam adapts both to the straight and wavy shapes of furniture and walking paths, and is so lightweight that it can be moved and transported by one person.
The partition is produced by Conti.
hauff technik advertises with the slogan "Straight through the wall." The saying is usually interpreted symbolically, but for a cable it can be taken literally, which is exactly what the product "Segmento" does, it skilfully guides cables through walls and other bottlenecks. The colourful PU gel innovation is resistant, highly elastic and free of plasticisers, and was developed in cooperation with Technogel, a joint venture between the Italian bicycle seat manufacturer Selle Royal and Otto Bock.
The Innovation Award Polyurethane 2008
What is that? This question comes to mind at the first glance of this coconut-like something. One thing is for sure: It looks extremely comfortable. And it really is. With her "Stülpsessel" (inside out chair) Annika Frye has created the cosiest temptation to just come and have a seat.
Thanks to the 'turning inside out' principle, the object can be transformed into a resting place for one to three persons; several chairs can be creatively transformed into seating arrangements.
FIN/80 is the abstract name for a fascinating idea: neither sitting nor standing. Michael Thaller's submission from 2008 is not just a curiosity but reality. In use the 2-d object deforms itself into a 3-d resting object. By leaning against it, the upper part bends forming a backrest. Polyurethane optimally meets demands in elasticity, formability and tensile strength. This furniture is suitable for bars and discotheques, for medical practices and other waiting areas and museums.
It is beautiful, stylish and functional: the laptop case by Nadja Ruby. The luxury commodity made of polyurethane combines different material properties and manufacturing processes.
The perfect adhesion of PUR is just as well used as the in-mould coating or the ability to imitate different leather surfaces.
The innovativeness of Maximilian Flender's development of a production ready PUR pultrusion process lies in the fact that, with relatively low production speeds and simple injection boxes, an already existing prototypical process was further developed to a series similar process. The result: with the help of this development PUR, as proven competitive matrix, can be applied in all areas of pultrusion in a cost efficient manner (above all for interior and exterior panelling for rail vehicles and support profiles for the building sector) where to date UP, VE and EP are still used.
An age-old dream of mankind: to entrust tiresome daily tasks to a robot that will safely, reliably and without any objections complete them. Care-O-bot 3 is such a robot and needs, besides its liking for good service, a robot skin. This skin must meet the requirements for robot gestures, insensitivity and customisability – this was all made possible with foam plastic by the Frauenhofer Institut in cooperation with Bayer Material Science AG.
"Plastic is the material of the 21st century, nano-technology the key technology of the 21st century" says PANADUR GmbH, and designed the PANADUR IMC-System for surface coating moulded parts. The process is characterised by the absence of any solvents and the generation of nano-particles.
The advantages of the innovative coating include:
• water resistance
• little or no odour
• high heat resistance
The Innovation Award Polyurethane 2010
Nature comes up trumps with aesthetic and at the same time functional surfaces, while manmade products often lag behind. The industrial designer Hagen Ißbrücker strives for functional and communicative surface design, especially in the form of ornaments. Under the motto "surface follows function", he developed a different kind of surfboard. The board is equipped with a traction pad made of polyurethane to give surfers grip. This pad replaces the so-called Surfwax, which must be applied regularly and gets dirty quickly.
"junic" is a therapeutic support aid developed by textile designer Kerstin Sachs. The idea developed from her hypotonic daughter who, among other things, suffers from a limpness of the muscles and movement disorder. For therapeutic exercises at home, Sachs was searching for functional elements to make things easier. Aids already on the market did not provide the solution she had hoped for, so the creative mom developed her own aid. In conversations with therapists and based on her research 'junic' was created - for handicapped children and children with developmental disorders. It motivates for new movements and appeals to different stimuli. With several segments, this aid is adaptable and very flexible.
Because of their lightweight, carbon fibre materials are becoming increasingly important in the automotive and machine engineering sectors. However, their application is difficult because of their high impact sensitivity. Artur Tsavenko, Lukas Wankel, Andreas Rutz, Franz Lutz and Martin Kinner searched for a cost efficient carbon skeleton construction made of semi-finished products with the objective of using a foamed plastic (PUR core) in combination with an exterior shell to achieve high impact resistance and splinter protection. This new and cost efficient approach opens new application possibilities for foamed plastics outside the aviation and aerospace industry.
"Many years ago I found polyurethane as the ideal material for my sculptures as a freelance artist" says Angelika Arendt.
Her pieces of art, made of polyurethane foam, seem to come from somewhere out of this world, their organic structures are fantastic. The material properties create an entirely new design language.
"terrasensa" by Michael Kunze (Hübner GmbH) and Jens Freitag (TEO Industriedesign GmbH) promises new approaches in therapy and training. Thanks to a cushioned PUR underground, this training system offers realistic, natural bumps with different heights and depths. It is used for dance therapy, physical therapy and fitness training to strengthen muscles, helps prevent injury and improves motor skills, coordination and perception.
Beautiful things displayed in shop windows make us want to have them – this desire mostly results from a nice presentation. The keyword presentation plays an important role in sales. PUR displays are of great importance. Kling GmbH is well aware of this and presents innovative work. They searched for a cost efficient manufacturing technology for hollow bodies to avoid heavy weight, high material usage and thus high costs. With their visual presentation shapes they let customers slip into another world.
Almost anyone can build a house like this. The Lasselsberger Engineering System House developed by KraussMaffei and LB Engineering GmbH consists of 16 completely prefabricated elements. Plaster, paint, flooring, plumbing and electrical installations as well as windows and doors are already included in the elements. This means quick installation at low costs, thanks to polyurethane sandwich elements. These elements are lightweight but sturdy and have excellent insulation properties.
Safety shoes are for the most part one thing: heavy and not very breathable. Nevertheless, many people rely on them on an everyday basis. Uvex Arbeitsschutz GmbH and Baysystems GmbH & Co. KG have taken on this problem and created the "uvex motion carbon". Thanks to the development of an environmentally friendly technology, the density of polyurethane moulded parts was significantly lowered without having to accept losses in quality. Result: lighter, better-absorbing shoes with high wearing comfort.
The Polyurethane Innovation Award 2012
Concrete is an extremely versatile material and its application range can be randomly expanded by the addition of polyurethane. Whether in interior design, furniture design, urban greening - the possibilities are unlimited! By adding polyurethane even the production of roll-concrete as flooring is now an option, making it possible to lay paths outdoors quickly and accurately. The application is as simple as rolling out lawns! During a cooperation project with a network of industrial partners students from the University of Applied Science - Design in Mainz, who are studying interior design, realized different ideas made of concrete. The production of a large number of polyurethane matrices was necessary in order to achieve a perfect and lasting surface quality. In the end concrete is the visible material in the foreground - yet it owes its perfect appearance to one ultimately invisible and fascinating material in the background - POLYURETHANE.
In the course of a lifetime, heart valves can become narrow or even leaky. The only effective treatment is to replace the defective heart valve with a prosthesis.
Currently available prosthetic heart valves are either mechanical prostheses made of pyrolytic carbon or biological prostheses made of bovine pericardium or porcine heart valves. Both of these, mechanical and biological prostheses, have advantages and disadvantages.
Polyurethane heart valves could theoretically combine the benefits of biological and mechanical heart valves without their weaknesses.
One of the recent developments in processing long fibre reinforced polyurethane is polyurethane fibre spraying. During this process, pre-cut fibres are introduced into a polyurethane spray, wetted and, robot controlled, introduced into an open mould. This process enables the mass production suitable manufacturing of sandwich structures. Dr.-Ing. Jan Kuppinger (Fraunhofer ICT) developed a method with which it is possible to determine the material properties of the surface layer and characterize the mechanical properties of the sandwich structures, in terms of polyurethane amount sprayed and surface weight of the fibreglass mat in the surface layers.
The variosensa board is a new tool for therapy and training that mobilizes the entire neuromuscular and sensorimotor system.
The multi-functional training tool for the sense of balance provokes compensatory movements. The unique design and varied options for feet positioning makes tilting in all directions possible. With the multi-axis connection principle of its feet, it can be adapted to all needs of the user.
Therapy and training success can be achieved even faster and, because of the board character, the fun factor is guaranteed...!
The versatility of polyurethane, leads to the development of completely new design options.
One particular example of this is the concept refrigerator coolpure 1.0 by BASF Polyurethanes. It offers new solutions for energy efficiency and sustainability, as well as many other advantages such as exceptional durability, functionality and a trendsetting design.
With the novel flooring system by ArsRatio GmbH rooms can be given new charm quickly and easily. Thanks to unlimited installation options, laying on different sub structures is no problem.
The "old" floor does not have to be removed. The floor elements are sturdy and resilient and later also easily replaceable - and reusable.
The imagination knows no limits - the most varying surfaces, even unusual ones, are possible. A variety of materials can be combined in an integrative manner and illuminated.