Düsseldorf, Germany — Finding success takes time. That's why materials maker Covestro AG (Hall 6/A75-1-3) is looking to the future at K 2016 while playing up the success of innovations introduced at previous K events.
“Pushing boundaries is how Covestro really works,” CEO Patrick Thomas said at an Oct. 18 press event. Board member Markus Steilemann added that innovation “is the real growth driver” for the firm, which is based in Leverkusen, Germany.
Covestro is making its K debut after Bayer AG spun off its Bayer MaterialScience unit in September 2015. Thomas pointed out that the firm now is in commercial production of polyurethane foams that use carbon dioxide as a feedstock. That technology — which Thomas said originally was intended for polycarbonate — now is being looked at in comfort, automotive and construction applications and may be expanded to thermoplastic and rubber materials as well, he added.
Materials made by Covestro also were part of the success of Solar Impulse 2, the solar-powered aircraft that recently completed a flight around the world. Covestro's PC, PU and thermoplastic PU materials were used on the aircraft because of their lightweight qualities.
Thomas described Solar Impulse as “a flying laboratory,” which now has opened up uses for those materials in food, automotive and construction markets.