Next generation intelligent, recyclable waterproofing membranes for the construction industry

intelligent, recyclable waterproofing membranes

The NextGen TPO – project will develop sustainable, safe and intelligent polymer membrane solutions, fit for the current and future needs of the construction industry.

Sustainability and recyclability are high on the agenda in the construction industry. This, combined with a strong drive for transforming roofs from passive to active parts of the building envelope by way of rooftop solar energy generation, roof gardens and rainwater retention systems, create new opportunities for the waterproofing industry; requiring novel innovative material and system solutions.

Protan, a leading international manufacturer of roofing membranes, will start the ambitious NextGen TPO project in 2020. The project is an innovation project for the industrial sector, supported by The Research Council of Norway. The goal is to develop an innovative new product portfolio of advanced, sustainable materials that are easy to install, durable, climateindependent, environmental-friendly - and 100% recyclable. The project combines demanding interdisciplinary research and development activities in the areas of materials technology, manufacturing processes, building and installation, as well as in modelling and simulation of product performance. Protan is currently in the initial phase of this highly interesting and important research project and will work together with Norner Research throughout the project.

Norner Research contribution

As an active R&D partner in the NextGen TPO project, Norner Research is seeking to contribute with worldleading expertise within advanced polymer development, hereunder polymer structure-properties-processing competence, thermal, chemical, rheological and mechanical analyses, accelerated ageing testing and lifetime predictions, molecular characteristics, and laboratory-scale polymer processing pilots. Key personnel from Norner R&D will assist in in the development activities and implementation of the project. Norner Research will contribute with essential competence within formulation design and development of formulation compounds (polymers, additives, fillers, stabilisers, fibres/textiles) through a unique global supplier network in combination with own know-how. Norner Research will, in particular, use market-leading expertise on polymer additives and polymer structureproperties- processing relationships to achieve a new polymer material with best-in-class durability and mechanical performance.

NextGen TPO outcome - huge environmental benefits

The development project will require high quality, high risk and interdisciplinary R&D efforts in applied polymer research, advanced materials characterisation, process development and modelling and simulation. The project outcome will be a direct contribution to specific UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDG). The NextGen TPO will offer a new membrane material which is recyclable and not containing any hazardous compounds. These features are particularly addressing SDG 3, 12, 13 and 14, by ensuring good health and well-being for producers, installers and end-users, in addition to preserving the climate and life below water by promising no release of hazardous substances to the environment. Furthermore, the NextGen TPO will be engineered to reduce heat island effects in urban areas, contributing to achieve more sustainable cities and communities (SDG 11).

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