Midland, Michigan -- Dow's Formulated Systems business has invested in a state-of-the-art technical centre to expand its innovation capabilities at Birch Vale in the UK. Dow said the move will enable growth in engineering elastomers and other speciality polyurethane systems markets.
The new application development/customer service centre provides customers with the ability to rapidly test and scale up new products that utilise Dow technology, the company says.
"Our new application development centre further enhances Dow's customer service across Europe," said Paul Fitzgerald, marketing manager, engineering elastomers, in a company statement.
"We are committed to providing customers with fast solutions, and our new technical service and demonstration centre allows us to do this by offering customers the benefit of trialling products without putting their production on hold."
Other recent European investments by Dow Polyurethanes include a new polyurethanes R&D centre set up in late 2011 at its systems house in Correggio, Italy, to strengthen Dow's service to both local and European customers. Correggio is also a global R&D centre for PU foams and composites for Dow's formulated systems, PU and automotive businesses, as well as a lab for the Italian systems house, which employs about 70 people.
In July 2011, Dow and Saip Equipment inaugurated 'cedepa' (continuous panel development centre), an industrial scale line conceived to accelerate the innovation of polyurethane-based panels made with the double-lamination process for thermal insulation in building and construction.
This testing and prototyping centre, in Tudela in Navarra, Spain, serves Dow and Saip customers, as well as external R&D and technology centres, universities, quality certification groups, and other external players interested in innovation and sustainability.
"These expansions illustrate Dow's continued commitment to investing in the delivery of innovative solutions for our customers," said Jon Penrice, global general manager, Dow Formulated Systems, in Dow's announcement. "The needs of this industry are constantly changing, and to help our customers succeed, Dow continues to invest to offer our customers innovative and differentiated solutions."