The world’s first recovered carbon black (rCB) R&D facility, established by Carbon Clean Tech (CCT) and located close to the company’s production plant in Stegelitz, Germany, is now fully operational. It has more than 250m² of floor space.
Pieter ter Haar – former rubber compounder and manager at Dunlop Conveyor Belting – was hired at the beginning of 2015 as manager, and a new lab assistant was also taken on board. Both have additional responsibilities at the CCT production plant.
The building that houses the R&D center was used previously by CCT as a pilot plant before its industrial scale production facility was built in 2012. “In 2014 we made the decision to renovate the facility and create this R&D center. We started renovating at the beginning of 2015 from the ground up, investing in equipment, hiring talent and refitting the location to create our three separate lab areas,” ter Haar says.
These comprise an analytics room, a press room and a mixing room. “We wanted to have three different rooms in order to limit rCB contamination, and to create clean, safe and logical work places that enable several tests to be easily performed simultaneously.
“The lab is divided into a mixing room where rubber compounds can be mixed, OAN measurements can be made and rCB can be pelletized; a press room for RPA measurements, rubber vulcanization and physical property testing of rubber compounds; and an analytical room where physical and chemical properties of rCB and rubber compounds can be analyzed,” explains ter Haar.
According to the R&D center manager, use of recovered carbon black has grown within the last year, enabling CCT to push ahead with the renovation: “This is especially the case with our tire customers. Currently we are focused on projects related to specific customer applications, rCB development, compound optimization and developing an even better understanding of our rCB in both plastics and rubber applications. We are also working on long-term projects such as our project with the DBU in which we are investigating the production of rCB from conveyor belt rubber and using belting as feedstock.”
At Tire Technology Expo 2015, Pyrolyx and CCT announced their merger (click here for more details), which has enabled an acceleration in R&D. CCT has also benefitted from the addition of Pyrolyx’s testing equipment. Click here for more information.
Plans have also now been put in place for further expansion of the Stegelitz factory, which has just begun supply of rCB to a tire manufacturer.
November 25, 2015