Dr. Michael Ruf, CEO of the KraussMaffei Group, Dr. Volker Nilles, Executive Vice President for New Machines Business at KraussMaffei, and Prof. Hans-Josef Endres, Head of the IKK, confirmed this during a visit to the campus in Garbsen near Hanover.
There is an optimal interplay of the respective competencies of the partners: the IKK focuses on analytical and application-oriented research and process and material development. The manufacturer of plastics machines, KraussMaffei, will ensure the implementation of the research results in sustainable industrial recycling, extrusion and injection moulding machinery.
Plastics that have already been used can no longer be considered waste but a recyclable material. New processes and technologies must allow the plastics industry to achieve marketable recycling of post-production and contaminated post-consumer plastic waste. The researchers and students at the IKK examine the entire value chain of plastic recycling from sorting, shredding, washing, melting, mechanical recycling and compounding through to the optimisation of the resulting recycled materials and their further processing into a new component.
KraussMaffei delivers multivariable extrusion and recycling systems to the IKK
With a clear focus on extrusion, a tandem EdelweissCompounding line for basic tests will be installed in spring 2022. Through a newly created doctoral position, the cooperation will focus on developing premium quality recycling processes to remove odours or contamination as efficiently as possible and optimise the resulting properties of the recycled materials.
KraussMaffei has been assisting the first practical tests in the TechCentre of the IKK in Garbsen with comprehensive machine technology since the move to the new location in September 2019. The initial joint research work in mechanical plastic recycling has already been conducted. At the same time, the students at the institute can be offered highly qualified and practical education.
Cooperation prepares students for practical applications
Michael Ruf said:
“Through the cooperation with the IKK, we can acquire young talent and accompany them in the training and education process. The students who work in our company, e.g., in the course of their bachelor’s or masters, are fully integrated into the processes from the start.
“This practical experience prepares them for the requirements of their future career. Ideally, we can offer the students prospects in our company following the completion of their studies.”