The Japanese engineering company SUGINO has entered into a strategic partnership with the Fraunhofer Institute for Manufacturing Engineering and Automation IPA. Over the next two years, colleagues from Fraunhofer IPA and Sugino will collaborate on research projects in the Dispersing Technology Center and Center for Particle Technology. The focus will be on industrial processing of biopolymers. Ivica Kolarić, Head of Business Unit Process Industry at Fraunhofer IPA, says: “Sugino has extensive expertise in the manufacturing of pastes and slurries for coating agents and storage technology, as well as in the processing of biopolymers. This cooperation offers the opportunity to bring the research insights gained into application and to implement them profitably. This expertise can also support regional users in particular, for example in the approval and certification of new plants.”
Fraunhofer IPA bundles competencies in this area of surface technology in its Dispersing Technology Center. With its comprehensive and interdisciplinary approach, the center covers the entire dispersing technology process chain, from the development of scientific principles to industrial applications. For example, the scientists conduct research into the safety of processes and plants, as well as energy and resource efficiency. Dr. Marc Entenmann, Head of the Dispersing Technology Center, comments: “As a cooperation partner, Sugino is symbiotically supplementing our competencies in the field of surface technology.”
In this cooperation project, IPA scientists are assisting Sugino in the development of their applications and offering their support in the design of the overall process, in addition to helping the company make the right choices in terms of materials. This means that key aspects such as the degree of automation, energy efficiency and cost-effectiveness are taken into consideration right from the start and are managed over the course of the project.
At the same time, this cooperation project also renews the collaboration between Fraunhofer IPA and the leading Japanese research institute for applied research, the National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology Kansai (AIST Kansai). At the opening symposium, key representatives and scientists from AIST spoke about the collaboration, biopolymers and polymer processing.