Solving Problems for the Next Generation

The recent release of our 2022 Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) report demonstrates a continued commitment to leaving the world better than we found it. The pursuit of the goals outlined in this report remains a top priority for our company and this year’s edition reflects both our current focus areas and future ambitions.

The Road to U.S. Electric Vehicle Battery Production

Consumer interest and sustainability goals are driving soaring demand for electric vehicles. The U.S. aims for electric vehicle sales to reach 50% of the total market by 2030, yet 99% of the raw and component materials for EV batteries are produced externally.1, 2 Sourcing foreign-made materials and batteries has already created challenges in the industry. Russia’s invasion of Ukraine led to market instability that caused the price of nickel, a key battery material, to skyrocket in March 2022.

Rheology of Paints and Coatings

From shiny cars to streak-free walls, we demand a lot from our coatings and paints. A high-quality paint not only needs dazzling color, but also must offer the right material properties for a smooth application and drying process. Consistency is crucial: too thin and the paint will run and drip; too thick and it will clump and not dry evenly. Spray paints and coatings also need to be applied smoothly without clogging the spray device.

Rheology of Hydrogels

Hydrogels are three-dimensional porous strctures that can absorb large amounts of water. They can be made up of polymers, protein, peptides, colloids, surfactants, or lipids.1 Hydrogels’ ability to uptake large amounts of water is useful for many biological applications, including drug delivery and tissue engineering. Since a hydrogels’ properties change as it absorbs water, scientists must accurately characterize its behavior at different saturation amounts and in varying conditions.

Material Analysis for Bioplastics Quality Assurance and Degradation

What are bioplastics? How can plastic manufacturers use them to improve the environmental impact of their products? With so many emerging green technologies, producers and consumers need to differentiate between greenwashing1 and genuine advancements. Furthermore, if a new development is deemed environmentally beneficial, all stages of the plastics supply chain, especially converters, must then learn how to incorporate the new technology without undermining their process or products.

Advancing Lithium-Ion Battery Technology Through Rheology

Lithium-ion batteries represent the dominant rechargeable battery on the market today.  They can be found in many applications including consumer electronics, electric vehicles and industrial equipment. Due to the tremendous adoption of lithium-ion batteries in recent years, battery technology is the focus of a diverse set of research areas aiming to improve battery lifetime, performance and safety.   

How Sustainable Polymer Development is Supported by Dynamic Mechanical Analysis

Dynamic mechanical analysis (DMA) is a technique to measure the response of materials when they are subjected to dynamic or cyclic forces. Typically, dynamic mechanical analysis involves looking at the elastic and viscous response of the material when it is under a small oscillating load that probes the molecular structure’s response to the perturbation . Other variables, such as temperature, time and frequency may be changed as part of the testing to characterize how the material performs under different environmental conditions.

Cutting-Edge Lithium-Ion Battery Development is Supported by Thermal Analysis Research

Whether you’ve used a cell phone or driven an electric vehicle (please, not at the same time), you’ve probably come to realize that lithium-ion batteries are taking over the energy world. They power our portable electronics, vital medical equipment, electric vehicles, and renewable energy storage. As the market expands, researchers are finding ways to make Li-ion batteries increasingly powerful, dependable, and safe, all while minimizing production time and cost.

What is Dynamic Mechanical Analysis?

From plastic for medical devices to rubber for tires, the materials we use must meet increasingly high demands. Product manufacturers and consumers expect their materials to look good, perform well, and cost less, all while being environmentally friendly. Fulfilling all these expectations requires deep understanding of material behavior from the molecular level to real world mechanical properties. Since there are many factors that affect the properties of materials, precise measurement tools and methods are required to ensure that materials fulfill the high expectations of our world. A key measurement and analysis method to evaluate the properties of materials at various stages of development and production is Dynamic Mechanical Analysis (DMA).