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TopChim signs research agreement with IWT and Ghent University for developing polymer nanoparticles


To extend its research and development projects on polymer nanoparticles, TopChim n.v. has signed an agreement with the “Institute for the promotion of Innovation by Science and Technology in Flanders” (IWT) and the “Centre for Materials Science and Engineering” (CMSE) of Ghent University.

Over the past 6 years TopChim has been developing SMI (Poly Styrene Maleimide) nanoparticles as a coating component for the paper, cardboard and packaging industry. After a successful market release of the first range of patented NanoTope 26 SMI nanoparticles, TopChim decided to invest in a more in-depth fundamental research programme for SMI nanotechnology.

The “Institute for the promotion of Innovation by Science and Technology in Flanders” (IWT) decided last July to grant the consortium of TopChim n.v. and the “Centre for Materials Science and Engineering” (CMSE) an important governmental funding to start up a three-year research and development project for SMI nanoparticles.

This project, starting in September 2008, has a total budget of 900,000 Euro and aims for a better understanding of the chemistry and physics at the nano level of the SMI nanoparticles. The main aspect of the program is to broaden insight into the physical characteristics of the nanoparticles such as shape, size and uniformity. Interaction with minerals and substances from renewable sources is another focus.

TopChim has two objectives for the scientific results gathered after the completion of this research programme. The first objective is to enable further development of coatings for paper, cardboard and packaging, to improve printability, brightness, barrier performances and ecological impact. The second objective is to start searching for new applications in other industries where SMI nanoparticles may improve performances for surface treatment, material reinforcement and material interaction.

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