More Efficient Generators Using Polymer Insulation 

Synthetic materials have achieved great significance in almost all realms of modern life and daily life without them has become unimaginable. In the areas of electronics technology and electronics, the exploitation of electric energy and even the construction of electronic devices would be unimaginable these days without synthetic materials. In order to satisfy modern needs in regards to things such as the more compact and thus more energy-efficient construction of such devices, leading Styrian and international energy and materials technology companies have come together in collaboration with the Polymer Competence Center Leoben GmbH (PCCL) and its scientific partners in the K Project PolyComp to form a unique research consortium.

The K Project is concerned with developing functional polymers for a more compact way of constructing high voltage generators, transformers, or smartphones and, last but not least, implementing research results achieved in marketable products. “With the participation of partners from the areas of electronics technology and electronics, the consortium is optimally positioned for this,” according to Frank Wiesbrock, the manager of the project. Strong impetuses can also be expected for the industry and research location of Steiermark, since many of the company and research partners of the consortium are located in this region. Research jobs are created on the one hand, but on the other hand, the development of new technology has always led to the generation of new jobs in industry and to investments in research infrastructure and production facilities.

Organisations that are involved as members in the consortium include leading Styrian companies such as Andritz, Hydro, Siemens Transformers Austria, Isovolta, or AT&S as well as international corporations such as Atotech Germany or Wacker Chemistry. The inclusion of the Montanuniversität Leoben, TU Graz, and TU Vienna as well as the Dutch TU Delft means that four universities are participating as research partners. This has established the K Project “Functional Polymer Composites (PolyComp),” which is also supported by the Austrian Research Promotion Agency (FFG) and the Styrian Business Development Corporation (SFG), as a project that is unique for Austria in that it establishes a competency network with a view to the long-term.

“With 22 of 50 competency centres and a research and development quote of 4.7%, Styria is research location number one in Austria. Close collaboration between business and science is the secret to success for the Styrian economy and has been an essential contributing factor in making Styria one of the most innovative regions in Europe. The K Project “PolyComp” with its international consortium is proof that the research competence of the PCCL is also in demand internationally,” Wirtschaftslandesrat Dr. Christian Buchmann happily stated.

About the consortium:
Representing the electro-technology industry, the companies of Andritz HYDRO GmbH (high voltage generators), Siemens Transformers Austria AG (large transformers), Isovolta AG (insulating materials), Elin Motoren GmbH (motors), and AT&S AG (conductor plates). EXEL Composites GmbH (composite materials) completes the group of Styrian companies. Several international companies that manufacture raw materials and process chemicals can also be counted among the members of the consortium. This includes Atotech (Berlin), Wacker Chemie (Burghausen), and ESK (Kempten). Four universities are also involved in the K Project as research partners: Montanuniversität Leoben, TU Graz, TU Vienna as well as the Dutch TU Delft.

About PCCL:
The Polymer Competence Center Leoben GmbH (PCCL) is the leading Austrian centre for cooperative research in the area of synthetic materials engineering and polymer sciences. Together with companies from the synthetic materials industry and universities (Montanuniversität Leoben among them), around 100 highly qualified employees work on R&D projects for innovative synthetic materials solutions with a broad range of applications (from automotive, aerospace, and packaging through to solar and photovoltaic applications). This is complemented by the K Project “Functional Polymer Composites (PolyComp)” in the are of polymer-based composites for applications in the electronics technology and electronics industries (

Mag. Petra Dobnik
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