The center started as technical division of Japanese joint venture Sumika Covestro Urethane, who marked its 50th anniversary on September 1st, 2019. Business Units Polyurethanes (PU) and Coating, Adhesive and Specialties (CAS) started technical activities in 1971, followed by Business Unit Polycarbonates (PCS) in 2009. Since then, the Innovation Center Japan has played an important role as an integral part of the Covestro R&D global network including Germany, the United States and China.
Dr. Markus Steilemann, CEO of Covestro, who celebrated the lab inauguration with the Japanese team said:
“The renewal of the Innovation Center Japan lab area will enable closer and more intensive cooperation with global leading companies in Japan. The joint innovation power is a main driver for our success in key industries”
For example, a new high performance PU R&D installation with power assist devices supports the customers to prototype larger PU panels. Another example is the two-component injection molding installation and Direct Coating Direct Skinning (DCDS) technology from Business Units PCS and CAS to drive innovation with Japanese partners and customers.
In addition to the upgraded lab, the “Customer Experience Center Lounge” is opened to enhance interactions in value added innovation and better involve Japanese customers. It will be positioned as the point of intersection between latest global technical trends from Covestro worldwide and ideas from customers.
Covestro’s Innovation Center Japan accelerates digital R&D
Digitalization is one of the important pillars of Covestro’s innovation strategy. The newly equipped lab is now expanding its digitalization in R&D by focusing particularly on data driven development with newly hired data scientists. Further, simulation, hardware installation, and laboratory automatization will be developed in close collaboration with the Covestro global digital R&D network.