Research and development are part of our DNA

Since our foundation in 1851, one thing has been the main focus for Lohmann: the development of cutting-edge and innovative products. Having always in mind the customer benefit, we work every day on making your processes even more effective and efficient by means of our adhesive solutions. One thing is absolutely clear: Our success depends on your added value. Therefore, our developers in state-of-the-art laboratories at the headquarters in Neuwied deal with the question of how innovative ideas can be "translated" into new products and applications and how existing products can be improved.

At Lohmann, we focus on three areas that will shape our company in the future, also with regard to market potential and environmental issues:

1. Faster solutions for market- and customer projects

The “Fast Track” team, made up of segment and material experts, stands for the rapid implementation of market projects and modifications. This is where our segment experts from the areas of Transportation, Graphics, Industrial and Home Appliance and Electronics come together with material experts from the areas of liners, foils and foams. The Medical sector enjoys a special position due to the regulatory requirements of the market. We meet these challenges with an independent, focused team. An ideal combination for implementing your requirements in a targeted manner.

Always in the fast lane: The Fast Track Team

The “Fast Track” team at Lohmann consists of experts for market-oriented product developments and modifications. The goals of the team are the development of new, marketable pressure-sensitive adhesive products based on existing adhesive formulas, the implementation of routine modifications and the management of current products and ranges.

For this purpose, we take the existing components and recombine them. This enables us to react extremely quickly with products adapted exactly to new requirements of our customers, so to speak “in the fast lane”.

Our materials experts for carriers, liners and foams procure the right components from external manufacturers and ensure their further development. The so-called R&D managers, on the other hand, are our specialists when it comes to the individual markets and market segments. They “assemble” the components to create new, better adhesive solutions. And they ensure that the customer's requirements are correctly translated into adapted product designs.

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Here are some examples of how the Fast Track Group found solutions:

  • During the development of a new, double-sided foam adhesive tape, it was observed that the old liner no longer suited the new adhesive mass. The peeling force of the film liner was simply too high. As a result, the material experts of the Fast Track Group developed a modification of the liner that is easier to peel off and still guarantees the desired labeling properties. The liner was rated very highly by the customer and thus it is now also used in similar products that require a lower liner peeling force.
  • One customer of vapour barrier adhesive tapes complained that the paper cover (paper liner) of a new product tore when he tried to remove it when bonding. Our quality data gave no indication of this deficiency. After analysis at the customer, it became apparent that the customer was pulling off the liner jerkily so that the paper was tearing. First of all, the Fast Track Team developed a test method (quick trigger) in order to be able to investigate and adjust the error whenever necessary. The cause was found to be micro-fissures on the edge of the paper that occur during cutting the adhesive tape. A new cutting process to avoid the micro-fissures was then put to the test. The vapour barrier tape was converted to this gentler cutting method. The quick release method no longer showed any liner fissures and the customer confirmed the improvement.
  • An initial formula already existed for a thermally conductive adhesive tape for thermal management in electronics. The Fast Track Group developed a product range within only a few months, which includes three different thicknesses and two different colours. For this purpose, the formula and the coating process were adapted accordingly, and the resulting heat-conducting properties of the products were measured and statistically verified. Thus, after a short time, a product range was available that is now being used by customers for cooling LEDs and batteries

2. Data-driven development

An inestimable value of our Lohmann company lies in the decades of experience in the development, production and processing of solvent-based adhesives. The development know-how gained was digitally preserved in the form of development databases. The systematic use of this data by means of state-of-the-art technologies and data analysis tools for a fast, efficient and intelligent development method is carried out by the “Data-Driven-Development” team.

The Data-Driven Development Team: Data as a new raw material in adhesive tape development

The Data-Driven Development team consists of experts in the development of water- and solvent-based pressure-sensitive adhesives and in the field of data analytics. The goal of the team is to develop new pressure-sensitive adhesives for our tapes with the help of state-of-the-art data analytics, to maintain the range of our pressure-sensitive adhesives and to find suitable tools for the digitalization of daily laboratory work in research and development and its administration.

Our adhesives experts are supported by our data analytics specialists in development in order to make the best possible use of the new raw material "data", to preserve the knowledge gained and to create the opportunity to learn from this data. These data analysis colleagues also support the entire research and development department when it comes to data analysis, the creation of empirical models, and optimal and efficient experimental designs.

Here are some examples from the area of water- and solvent-based pressure-sensitive adhesive development and data-based development:

  • Development of water-based adhesives for improved air quality in automotive interiors: Bonding in automotive interiors requires adhesive solutions that have low emission behavior, low odor, and at the same time deliver excellent performance on surfaces that are difficult to bond. The Bonding Engineers developed the right solution for this.
  • Optimization of a pressure-sensitive adhesive: As part of a portfolio optimization, an adhesive system for our graphic products was optimized. For this purpose, our team developed a special test plan using the latest data analysis techniques. With very little experimental effort, it was possible to identify those parameters that showed the greatest potential for optimization and, at the same time, to calculate their optimum based on the empirical model generated.
  • For the development of a structural adhesive tape, we supported our colleagues from the Advanced Adhesives department in data analysis and the creation of empirical models for the optimization of adhesive formulations. One example of this support was the optimization of UV-LUX® adhesive technology.

3. Focus on new technologies

Advanced adhesives and functional materials have always been a focus topic in R&D. These include our reactive polyurethane and epoxy resin-based adhesive tapes and films, also known as Structural Bonding Films (SBFs), and the world's first UV-LUX®, the first UV-curing epoxy resin tape with color change. Another focus is on the implementation of new, solvent-free hotmelt and UVC-curing acrylate technologies for our coating lines, so that we can continue to respond flexibly to our customers' special requirements and needs as well as to market trends. The Dry Coated Adhesives team is responsible for this with our latest TwinMelt® technology.

Bonding the future: The Dry Coated Adhesives Team

The focus of the Dry Coated Adhesives team is on cross-market research, development and implementation of state-of-the-art hotmelt pressure-sensitive adhesives (HMPSAs) as well as novel HMPSAs and 100% solvent-free systems or tapes that can be processed in a similar way to hotmelt adhesives.

What do the projects look like in concrete terms? Here are some examples:

  • Continuous screening of alternative or new raw materials, e.g. in cases of higher-performing and sustainable raw materials and as replacements for discontinued raw materials, in close cooperation with strategic suppliers and the Lohmann Supply Chain.
  • Market-/Sales-related "New Product Development" projects of adhesive tapes in cooperation with Application & Product Management and R&D Fast Track Segment Managers.
  • Process transfer and support of test and development products to relevant production machines - from pilot scale to standard product, i.e. the customer or market product.
  • Documentation, management and knowledge building using measurement data of pressure sensitive adhesives and tapes in cooperation with the Data Driven Development team.
  • Research, development and processing of filled HMPSA systems as well as research on new pressure-sensitive adhesives to overcome the disadvantages of conventional ones.

The latest project for the Dry Coated Adhesives team is TwinMelt®, a state-of-the-art technology for sustainable adhesive solutions without solvents.

  • Combining two technologies or adhesive systems: Rubbers (SIS and SBS polymers) and modified or pure UVC-curing acrylics.
  • Research & development of solvent-free new products as well as alternative solutions to standard products with special features such as stripe coating, thicker adhesive tape systems, low VOC values as well as expansion of toll coating
  • TwinMelt® Toolbox with growing number of solvent-free adhesives: sustainable alternative products in grammages from 30-100 g/m².
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