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Industrial Development of PANIPLAST Process Poly(aniline) Conductive Polymers

Periodic Reporting for period 1 - PANIPLAST (Industrial Development of PANIPLAST Process Poly(aniline) Conductive Polymers)

Reporting period: 2015-08-01 to 2016-01-31

Polyaniline has historically been one of the most promising conductive polymers from a cost/performance perspective, but processing issues have limited its uptake. Building upon seminal work on polyaniline performed at the CEA, RESCOLL (an independent research company based in France specialized in chemistry materials) has developed and patented a new electrically conductive polyaniline formulation under the trade name of PANIPLAST™.

PANIPLAST polymers are safe-by-design, REACh compliant, low cost, easily produced materials which can be used to produce highly concentrated dispersions which exhibit very high electrical conductivities and improved stability.

The unique and versatile nature of PANIPLAST technology opens up new opportunities to create a vast range of products based upon its excellent electrical conductivity such as conductive resins, conductive coatings, ultrathin films, inks etc.
PANIPLAST is a material with great market potential and is an innovative response to many market needs for which there is no commercial solution available today for cost or performance reasons.

Sensing a significant market interest, and that end-users are prepared to integrate technology into their products, RESCOLL purchased STILZ Chimie in 2015, a producer of paint and ink formulations, in order to acquire pilot and industrial scale production capability.
The challenge is now to transfer the technology at the industrial scale in order to bridge the performance capabilities and cost of PANIPLAST conductive polymers with the increasing market demand for conductive materials.
The feasibility study performed in the frame of the Phase 1 SME Instrument allowed to demonstrate the economic viability of the PANIPLAST technology and strong market perspectives. We undertook a thorough analysis of the market opportunities and realities for PANIPLAST products, investigated several market segments and finally prioritized them as a function of their attractiveness and of the competitive advantages offered by PANIPLAST to build an ambitious but realistic commercialisation roadmap.
It is estimated that a commercial readiness level (CRL) of 5 was achieved thanks to the Phase 1.

Conditions and strategy for reaching the target markets were investigated; an initial assessment and quantification of the resources to be committed for accessing the market and undertaking market replication demonstrations was also carried out.
Last but not least, contacts with several industrial players convinced of the added value of PANIPLAST solutions and ready to behave as pilot customers / partners for testing PANIPLAST products in a real life environment were also secured.
Based on this study, it is expected that in the four years following the Phase 2 project, STILZ Chimie will achieve an annual turnover of 12.24 M€ across the combined markets of construction, wind power, and composites, reaching annual production volumes of 275 tons of PANIPLAST polymers and formulated products.