Norner AS

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Norner AS

Norway
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Barreto C.,University of Oslo | Barreto C.,Norner AS | Hansen E.,University of Oslo | Fredriksen S.,Norner AS
Polymer Degradation and Stability | Year: 2012

Poly(propylene carbonate), PPC, is produced via a catalytic copolymerization of CO 2 and propylene oxide. The common side product propylene carbonate and catalyst residues are detrimental to the thermal and mechanical properties of the resulting PPC. Thus, efficient purification procedures are needed. PPC produced using zinc glutarate (ZnGA) catalyst was purified by a novel solid-liquid extraction using aqueous maleic acid. The resulting PPC exhibited a dramatically increased thermal stability as the onset of the degradation was increased by 85°C compared to that of a crude PPC reference sample. It is suggested that metal-ion coordination between some in situ produced zinc species and the carbonyl moieties in the PPC backbone may explain this. The stiffness of the PPC increased by 75% when plasticizer side products were removed by the solid-liquid extraction. This novel purification method provides a sustainable alternative because only water and no organic solvent is used, and the method allows for the tailoring of the metal residues from the catalyst in the final polymer. The novel solid-liquid extraction procedure renders the PPC thermally stable at 200°C for ca 60 min, thus expanding the processing window for PPC. © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: BSG-SME | Phase: SME-2013-1 | Award Amount: 2.27M | Year: 2013

The consortium of SMEs in the AQUAFARMCONTROL project will pursue a large innovation and market opportunity through the development and demonstration of an innovative system to enable Precision Livestock Farming in marine aquaculture and to effectively eliminate the mounting and critical problem of escapes from fish pens. The system will be based on a multi-purpose capsule implanted in fish, in combination of both SONAR transmitter and GSM surveillance technologies. In order to achieve the project objectives, the SMEs that integrate the consortium will collaborate with renowned RTD performers to overcome several scientific and technical barriers. The project targets radical innovation related to sonar technology and real-time surveillance of screening of marine fish pens; micro-electronics and ID capsules as well as integration and development of appropriate control strategies and systems. The developed and demonstrated system carries a host of benefits and unique selling points to the end-users in the marine aquaculture industry notably mitigation of severe environmental problems related to escapes as well as large costs and efficiency advantages. The benefits will ensure the competitiveness and viability of European aquaculture and at the same time allow the SME consortium to exploit a very large, global large market opportunity. The SME consortium has the capabilities to produce and market the system, but lacks the financial resources as well as the expertise in micro-electronics, materials and IT to enable the required technological development. Therefore, the group has identified the Research for SMEs programme as the suitable vehicle for overcoming the technological and financial barriers of the project.


REVIVAL focuses on the problem of maximising recovery of oil from wells and prolonging their productive life; a commercial imperative for the industry and a response to EU policies to secure Europes energy supply in respect to oil. Globally only 32% of available oil reserves are extracted from oil fields. A 5% increase in the recovery factor would yield as much oil as is expected from all future exploration efforts. The reason for low recovery rates is the breakthrough of water or gas in the well. The industry has addressed this by developing inflow control devices (ICD & AICD) that choke oil production both at start up and when gas or water incursion occurs; but do not stop these entering the system. Our innovative solution utilises the properties of fluid dynamics to create an Autonomous Inflow Control Valve (AICV) that, whilst remaining simple in concept, eliminates the weaknesses of AICD and ICD products. By comparison, proof of concept tests on our AICV show it will increase recovery, does not choke initial oil production, can stop gas and water completely, is autonomous, reversible, reliable and price competitive. We have established the concept, but still face significant technical challenges which we need to outsource to specialist R&D partners. These involve developing an innovative laminar flow element, filters and seals that can withstand the harsh environments in wells. REVIVAL enables our SME partnership to create a novel, highly differentiated, validated pre-production prototype that can be quickly commercialised post project completion, providing outstanding benefits for our own organisations, our oil company clients, national government exchequers and Europe as a whole. It responds to competitive threats we as SMEs face. The primary market are oil company clients are receptive to a solution. The known market potential is 224 million within 5 years of project completion. Secondary markets exist in environmental protection from oil spillages.


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: BSG-SME-AG | Phase: SME-2 | Award Amount: 2.58M | Year: 2010

Our members, as operators of refrigerated transport and installers of HVAC systems, are dependent on excellent insulation for energy efficiency. There are over 600,000 refrigerated vehicles and containers in Europe and each one wastes thousands of Euros of energy each year due to poor insulation. Likewise, payback on renewable energy systems is compromised by poor thermal storage, reducing their popularity. In short, our members are wasting energy and hence losing money through a lack of optimal insulation. Currently, our options are limited to expensive, high performance materials such as aerogels and vacuum insulation panels, or low-cost but poorly-performing foams. We need a new insulation material that can fill this performance gap, offering high thermal resistance but at a cost close to insulating foams. The HIP project will develop an innovative new class of polymer insulation materials based on high internal phase emulsion templating (HIPE). HIPE materials have been used in other applications but never before for high-performance insulation. HIPE materials allow close control over porosity, pore size distribution and mechanical properties. Because of this, we can precisely engineer the thermal properties of the material within a low-cost manufacturing process. Our objective is to achieve a thermal conductivity of 0.015W/m.K at a cost of less than 500 per cubic metre. Compared to conventional PU foam insulation, the savings will be considerable: Based on our predicted uptake in the refrigerated transport and solar thermal markets alone, the reduced CO2 emission will be over 200,000 tonnes by 2020 and our members will save in excess of 50 million in energy costs.


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: BSG-SME | Phase: SME-2011-1 | Award Amount: 1.38M | Year: 2011

The building sector consumes 40% of Europes energy. With rising energy prices and greater focus on energy efficiency the building sector offers the single largest potential for energy savings. This is reflected in the Energy Performance of Buildings Directive, EPBD, 2002/91/EC. This Directive strongly encourages the use of passive heating and cooling techniques such as thermal mass in building construction and refurbishment. Passive techniques such as thermal mass offer the potential to save up to 50% of energy used in heating and cooling. However, there is a barrier to its effective implementation. In order for thermal mass to work effectively the concrete and brick surfaces must be in contact with ambient air and kept free of insulation, including conventional mineral wool type sound absorbers. The acoustics reverberations (echos) however caused by this can affect the health and work efficiency of inhabitants and in some severe cases rendering the building uninhabitable. Whilst there are some high end solutions to the problem, primarily thick polymer or metal panels, these are too expensive in all but high end applications. There is an urgent and growing need for a low cost, high performance acoustic absorber that allows thermal mass techniques to work effectively yet is at a price comparable to low end mineral wool solutions. The SMEs in this proposal have come together as a supply chain to develop just such a new type of sound absorber, for public and commercial non-residential buildings, Echo2eco. This solution will use an array of laser cut micro slits, of width 100 micron in 200 micron film. There are significant technical challenges in achieving this solution, however with our research partners and innovations in multi-layer polymer material formulation/lamination and novel laser beam/optics configurations we are confident we will be successful. In so doing we aim to generate additional sales revenue of 112m within 5 years post project completion.


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: BSG-SME-AG | Phase: SME-2 | Award Amount: 2.64M | Year: 2010

In December 2007, the European Commission imposed a total of 247 635 000 fines on the five largest manufacturers of chloroprene rubber for participating in a cartel. As a result of this price fixing and market abuse by large enterprises, the SME involvement in this sector has diminished and requires research investment to re-build its presence. Additionally there is increasing pressure to replace the vulcanisation accelerator, ethylene thiourea (ETU), due to its assessment as a Cat 2 rep carcinogen as per the EU classification, IARC and EPA. It is believed that under REACH it will be classified as a CMR substance (Carcinogenic/Mutagenic/toxic for Reproduction) which will lead to legislation prohibiting or banning its use. The SafeRubber project aims to develop a safer alternative accelerator to replace the carcinogenic ethylene thiourea (ETU) based accelerators to be used in the manufacturing of rubbers such as polychloroprene (CR) and epichlorohydrin (ECO). This will be based around a new catalyst molecule that has tri-functionality, which offers the added benefit of reducing consumption of metal oxides during manufacturing, lowering manufacturing costs and giving SMEs another unique differentiator, allowing them to compete in the market.


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-FP | Phase: NMP.2012.2.2-4 | Award Amount: 5.48M | Year: 2013

WALiD will combine design, material and process developments using thermoplastic materials to create cost-efficient, lightweight and recyclable blades which will be demonstrated by industrial end-users. The power generated by off-shore wind turbines is proportional to the rotor plane area of the blade. However, the weight of large blades puts the materials used under considerable strain, leading to shorter operational life. Off-shore wind turbines operate under harsh conditions e.g. extreme temperatures, humidity & salt conditions. Despite these critical technical requirements for strength and stability, the materials must be cost-efficient and recyclable. The key innovation in WALiD is the introduction of thermoplastic composite materials and processing into wind blade applications. These materials can replace thermoset-based materials in the root, tip and shear web, leading to the following advantages: 1. Improved design of blade root, connection concept and tip: strain analysis on the blade will enable high-performance thermoplastic composites to replace thermosetting components, saving costs and weight. 2. Replacement of the shell core with thermoplastic foam materials: the density of the core material can be modified to the specific load, optimizing the weight/stability profile. Further cost and weight savings will result from processing (elimination of cutting process, no infiltration of resin into empty spaces). 3. Improved modular concept of shear web design: replacement of thermosets by thermoplastic composite structures to ensure lightweight, load-optimized design. 4. Development of fibre-reinforced thermoplastic coating, improving environmental resistance, anti-icing properties and durability against abrasion combined with a new predictive simulation model. Strong industrial participation (74% of the project budget) with an accompanying unfunded Industrial Exploitation Board will ensure the commercial relevance and exploitation of these developments.


Fredriksen S.B.,Norner AS | Jens K.-J.,Telemark Technological R and D Institute | Jens K.-J.,Telemark University College
Energy Procedia | Year: 2013

Alkanolamine based post-combustion capture processes (PCC) are currently the most attractive technologies for CO2 capture. Solvents are degraded in this service by flue gas components, for example oxygen. Solvent degradation can be classified into two reaction types: 1) amine oxidative degradation through a) autoxidation pathways, b) oxidation in the presence of metal ions and 2) thermal degradation including reactions in the presence of CO2. This study represents a literature survey of oxidative degradation (reaction type 1a) of 2-Amino-1-ethanol (MEA), 2-Amino-2-methyl-1- propanol (AMP), N,N-Bis(2-hydroxyethyl)methyl-amine (MDEA), and Piperazine (Pz). Thermal degradation products (reaction type 2) are included where appropriate in order to contribute to a more complete degradation overview of these compounds.

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