Whether in the comfort sector, in mobility or in various special applications: the areas of application for molded foam are innumerable. For this reason, we are expanding our existing infrastructure to include a competence center for molded foam in Valašské Mezirící, Czech Republic.
The Valašské Mezirící Molded Foam Competence Center
In order to turn our plans into reality, in July a 52,000 m2 property was purchased. This is located in Valašské Meziříčí in the east of the Czech Republic and consists of 18,700 m2 of production facilities, which contain 1,300 m2 of office space and the appropriate machinery and wich will be our new Molded Foam Competence Center. The Competence Center will in particular serve the Mobility business area by rounding off our portfolio in the acoustics and thermal solutions segments.
Molded foam is incredibly versatile
Molded foam is a genuine all-rounder and is used in many variations in a wealth of diverse areas. Basically, a distinction is made on the one hand between PU molded foam systems, such as flexible foam, rigid foam, integral skin foam, memory foam, molded foam with solid particles (graphite molded foam), and on the other hand microparticle foams (EPP foams). In the case of the former group, the production process is rather like cake making, as a liquid, reactive mass is cast into a mold. Owing to a chemical reaction, this subsequently expands and by the end of foaming fills the mold completely. The parts thus produced can then be further processed.
The microparticle foam production process is different and involves expanded polypropylene balls (EPP balls), which are blown into a mold and combine to form 3D microparticle components under the effect of steam. As the Head of Smart Materials & Products, Norbert Hessenberger, explains, “With our new Molded Foam Competence Center we will realize market potential in both the PU molded foam and EPP foam areas. All three business units will thus profit and Mobility above all.”