MOSCOW (Nov. 11, 1 p.m. ET) — Russian high-tech nanomaterials company Composite Holding has joined forces with the Russian Corp. of Nanotechnologies (Rusnano) to set up a carbon fiber-based polymer composites R&D center in Moscow.
The proposed research center is to be located within Russia's rapidly growing Skolkovo Innovation complex, a new technology development zone which has been likened to California's Silicon Valley.
The main aim of the new composites center is to raise the quality of Russian manufactured carbon fiber and lower its cost. Research will be focused on developing new ways to produce the polyacylonitrile precursors and carbon fiber, and on creating new high-strength polymer composite materials.
A deal to set up the new center next year has been formally agreed between Moscow-based Composite Holding and the Skolkovo Innovation complex. An initial investment of around 14.3 million euros is reportedly set to fund the center's activities through until 2014, with Composite Holding expecting around half that sum being raised from the Skolkovo development fund.
The center will have a 25-strong staff including several foreign experts, and a projected annual budget from 2015 estimated at 4.8 million euros.
“Until quite recently, corporate science in the field of polymer composite materials based on carbon fiber in Russia existed on an isolated basis.
“Using this composite materials R&D center, we plan to bring pure science, universities and business together. Our goal is to organize the process in a way that science will solve problems important to business,” commented Composite Holding's chief executive Leonid Melamed.
The project expects eventually to launch a number of business start-ups in the sector of composite materials production.
Composite Holding group is one of the largest Russian companies specialized in the development and production of composite nanomaterials. The group includes several manufacturers of carbon fiber and prepregs for aerospace, construction, wind energy, shipbuilding and the automotive industry.