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DSM opens international materials research center in Netherlands

Royal DSM officially opened its ambitious new research and development project on the Brightlands Chemelot Campus in Sittard-Geleen, Netherlands, today. On hand for the ceremony were Dutch Economics Minister Henk Kamp; Theo Bovens, Governor of Limburg Province; Dimitri De Vreeze, member of DSM's Managing Board; Roelof Westerbeek, President of DSM Engineering Plastics; and Atzo Nicolaï, President of DSM Netherlands.

PlasticsToday Staff

November 17, 2014

2 Min Read
DSM opens international materials research center in Netherlands

Part of a €100 million ($121 million) investment, the materials center is DSM Engineering Plastics' most important research facility worldwide. The proximity of startups and research and education institutes on the Brightlands Chemelot Campus offers further opportunities for open innovation, says DSM. 

DSM materials are used in countless applications and products worldwide from electronics connectors, surgical sutures, and medical implants to heat-resistant plastic engine parts, smart food packaging materials, solar panel coatings, and super-strong fibers.

For example, smart, breathable food packaging using Arnalite developed by DSM Engineering Plastics helps extend shelf life and avoid food wastage.

Dyneema, the world's strongest fiber that is both extremely light and flexible, has many innovative applications in everything from cut-resistant gloves to bulletproof apparel. One of the most intriguing concepts using the material is an automatic tsunami barrier that could be installed along coastlines and anchored, almost out of sight, in a trench behind the beach. When a tidal wave strikes, the Dyneema-based membrane unfolds, held upright by Dyneema cables, creating a wall that can stop up to 20 meters of water. The concept has been shown to work in a mechanical model that can be viewed on Youtube.

"This investment is perfectly aligned with our strategy for growth in materials sciences through innovative solutions for a more sustainable future for people today and for generations to come," said DSM's de Vreeze. "DSM's innovations create new possibilities and contribute to solutions to the major challenges the world is facing."

"By combining DSM Engineering Plastics' research and development, marketing, and sales activities under one roof in this very inspiring environment, we are creating optimal synergies," added Westerbeek. "With the science and knowledge brought together here, we aim to raise the bar even higher. The combination enables us to break new ground and to reduce the time to market for DSM innovations even further."

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