Chemical conglomerate Lonza Group Ltd. is boosting its profile in the plastics industry by setting up a laboratory in Georgia dedicated to understanding resins and additives.
Lonza's key offerings for plastics are Acrawax and Glycolube processing aids and Vanquish and Omadine antimicrobial additives.
The new laboratory gives Lonza in-house capability to duplicate manufacturing processes on a small scale.
"We now have the ability to characterize the impact of heat and shear on multiple additives during and after various manufacturing processes and the ability to determine the impact of the additives on many different plastic substrates and verify the subsequent performance of the additives after processing," a Lonza spokeswoman said in an email to Plastics News.
Lonza announced the laboratory opening at its Alpharetta, Ga., technology center on Nov. 28. Located there, the plastics laboratory can take advantage of the site's services for paints and coatings and marine anti-fouling formulations. The center also contains Lonza's centers of excellence for microbiology and analytical chemistry and an accelerated weather testing unit.
Lonza said the Atlanta area is a good region to site a global business because of its proximity to a major airport and skilled workforce. Also located in the area are Lonza's wood protection and water treatment businesses.
Lonza did not reveal the size of investment for the plastics laboratory.
"This new lab expands our ability to bring to market new solutions that will meet our customers' demands for durable and sustainable products," noted David Doles, head of Lonza's business unit for materials performance and protection, in a news release.
Lonza's product lines range from health care and nutrition to coatings and composites and to microbe control. The firm, based in Basel, Switzerland, recorded sales of 2.32 billion Swiss francs ($2.35 billion) and profit of 233 million francs ($235 million) for the first half of the year. Compared to a year ago, sales were up by about 15 percent and profit was 20 percent higher. The company runs more than 50 manufacturing and research facilities around the world and employs nearly 14,000.