AkzoNobel Opens R&D Campus in the UK

AkzoNobel has opened an R&D campus in Felling, UK. The campus includes a lab complex that can test new products in conditions that mimic the world’s most extreme environments, the company stated.

According to AkzoNobel, the €12.6 million R&D innovation campus combines the site’s 115-year history of product development with state-of-the-art facilities designed to keep the company at the fore of the coatings industry. It brings the total investment in the Felling site since 2011 to €31.6 million.

“As the birthplace of the International brand, we’re immensely proud of our Felling site, which has supplied products for some of the world’s most iconic buildings and structures,” says Jean-Michel Gauthier, managing director of the company’s Marine and Protective Coatings business. “The new laboratories will enable our technical experts to partner more closely with our customers and deliver innovative products and solutions that meet the most demanding specifications in our industry.”

A feature of the campus is a new application and testing laboratory. It will be used to test new products in extreme conditions such as temperature resistance, fire and high pressure. The facilities will also enable scientists to expose products to chemicals and corrosion, the company added.

The company reported that a comprehensive sustainability plan was at the heart of the design and development of the new complex. Features include solar wall cladding, an urban drainage system, grey water recycling, photovoltaic panels, air compressor heat recovery, and a sedum “green roof.”

The Felling facility is located around 25 miles away from AkzoNobel’s €100 million paint manufacturing plant in Ashington, which opened in 2017. AkzoNobel employs 3,000 scientists in 70 laboratories around the world and recently launched its Paint the Future startup challenge.