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The Nirotec Evo window profile
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The "Bioplastics Oskar"
Wolfgang Bauer, Head of Quality Management of Helmut Lingemann receives the award
A range of spacer profiles for insulating window glazing have won the “Bioplastics Oskar”, an annual award presented by trade publication Bioplastics Magazine. The manufacturer of the profiles is Helmut Lingemann GmbH & Co. KG of Wuppertal, Germany.
The award recognises innovation and achievement from users of bioplastic materials. It was given to Wolfgang Bauer, Head of Quality Management of Helmut Lingemann on December 10th during the 8th European Bioplastics Conference in Berlin. From a list of almost 20 proposals, five judges from academia, the press, and industry associations from America, Europa and Asia selected the five finalists and the winner.
The new spacer system is called Nirotec Evo, and is applied in windows and facades for a high level of insulation to reduce energy losses by using double and triple glazing.
Technical requirements are high strength and structural reinforcement (e.g. tensile modulus), low thermal conductivity, no fogging when used in insulating glass, and no incompatibility with other components in the insulation of windows and facades.
Together with a partner company, a tailor-made blend of different biopolymers based on PLA, biopolyester and further additives were developed.
The group says that about two million metres of Nirotec Evo have been processed into insulating glass units to date. The biopolymer ratio is approximately 40 tonnes. If Nirotec Evo were used for the total annual production of insulating glass units in Europe, about 18,000 tonnes of bioplastic material could be applied.
“The judges decided for Helmut Lingemann’s spacer profiles, because this is an example which shows that potential applications can be found in areas that do not come to ones mind immediately. And even though it offers a potential for high volumes of a bioplastic material,” said Michael Thielen, Publisher of Bioplastics Magazine and member of the jury. “And the application makes use of the biopolymers very special properties, in this case the mechanical and thermal properties combined with the very important feature of ‘no fogging’ which is essential for this application.
In addition the chosen biopolymer blend features very special adhesion properties and allows high speed bending procedures of the profiles. Modern thermal insulation technology meets modern materials; this is how ecological development should look like in todays technology age”, said Thielen.