The development of many industrial sectors (coatings, adhesives, cosmetics and additives for paper and textiles) is limited by the inability of existing technology to produce nanostructured polymer films via a sustainable technology. The objective of this industry-led project is to make possible a generation of radically-new products by developing a technology platform to produce films with controlled nanostructure without organic solvent or residual monomer, in compliance with impending European directives on solvent emissions. The breakthrough idea is to use waterborne nanocomposite (polymer-polymer and polymer-inorganic) nanoparticles with carefully controlled structure as building blocks for the films. Nanoparticle production, processing and properties (including biocompatibility) will be studied in an integrated technology platform. Industrialists will ensure the proper scale up and product development. Among the expected breakthrough properties are good adhesion to porous substrates, increased hardness, strength and wear-resistance with low dirt pick-up, higher impermeability to liquids and gases, and greater fire resistance. The technology will offer energy savings in production and transport. To achieve this objective, work programmes will integrate the contributions of 9 EC companies (including 3 SMEs) with that of academics from 12 centres of excellence. To retain and nurture European technological excellence, the project integrates activities in training and education along with programmes to exploit and disseminate the knowledge in the wider communities. As a result of the project, European industry - especially SMEs - will benefit from the introduction of new, value-added products into a competitive world market. As an example, in coatings alone there are 2500 European companies (including 1500 SMEs), employing a total of ca. 100,000 people and making products with a value of 15.4 billion Euros.
Fields of science
- FP6-NMP - Nanotechnologies and nanosciences, knowledge-based multifunctional materials and new production processes and devices: thematic priority 3 under the 'Focusing and integrating community research' of the 'Integrating and strengthening the European Research Area' specific programme 2002-2006.
Call for proposal
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Funding SchemeIP - Integrated Project