Freilassing, Germany — Kiefel GmbH has opened a Material Research and Development Center at its headquarters in Freilassing for research in sustainable packaging with a focus on natural fibers.
The plastic thermoforming and joining technology company opened an additional business area for fiber thermoforming last year in addition to its core business in plastics.
The center, which will be used for material research and tests, sample production and machine demonstrations, is connected to the company's Packaging Technology Center.
The two centers "deepen our materials expertise and allow us to support our customers even more closely in the development process for everything related with fiber materials, products and machines," Matthias Hausmann, head of central development, said in a news release. "We are thus consolidating our role as a holistic solutions provider."
The Material R&D Center complements Kiefel's Applied Polymer Research Center in the Netherlands, which focuses on materials research into recycled and bio-based plastics, according to Cornelia Frank, head of sustainability at Kiefel.
"We have been involved in various initiatives for a number of years, for example helping improve plastics recyclability," Frank said the release. "As a mechanical engineering company, we want to actively take responsibility in order to become the leading solution provider for the development and implementation of the most sustainable technology."
The aim of the "Rethinking Concept" is to rethink materials, machines, processes and products to achieve the ideal, most sustainable design for the customers. For example, the end product can be easily recycled in the circular economy or can biodegrade.