The competence network PolyComp (Functional Polymer Composites) investigates innovative material concepts and process technologies with a high potential of industrial marketability in order to develop new materials for electrical engineering and electronics. This network is unique in Austria, and particularly considers the important issues of environmental relevance and operation reliability of devices. Aiming at the implementation of these ambitious targets, an international research team collaborates in this interdisciplinary research network.
The rising demand for electrical energy continuously challenges the manufacturers of high voltage generators and transformers, who play the central role in the global supply: Generators and transformers have to become (even) more compact in order to minimize their weight and to save resources required during manufacturing. In addition, the performance of generators and transformers has to be optimized in order to deliver maximum efficiency factors.
The K-Project "Functional Polymer Composites" focuses on innovative material concepts and process technologies with high marketability potential. The development of new materials for electronics and electrical is focused on, while sustainable resource management, efficiency and environmental sustainability are the driving forces. Through interdisciplinary research, new materials are being developed that can be implemented into marketable products in the high-voltage engineering and electronics sectors. Funded by the FFG (Austrian Research Promotion Agency) and the SFG (Styrian Business Promotion Agency), the K-Project "Functional Polymer Composites” PolyComp is a network of expertise with long-term perspective and international visibility. Unique in Austria, joint research in the PolyComp network is performed together with national and international partner companies and universities. The scientific expertise of these partners includes the topics of polymer chemistry, materials science, polymer technology and high-voltage engineering.
Impact and effects:
In the course of materials development, the ever-important topics environmental sustainability and operational reliability are taken into account. For example, petroleum-based insulation media currently used will be replaced by environmentally safe oils of natural origin (e.g. rapeseed oil) in order to provide increased fire safety of transformers and to prevent environmental damage in case of leakage. New insulation plastics need to be developed in order to achieve compatibility of the new high-performance plastics with natural insulating oils at high operation temperatures.
PolyComp – Functional Polymer Composites
Univ.-Doz. Dr. Frank Wiesbrock, Key Researcher
Polymer Competence Center Leoben GmbH, Roseggerstrasse 12, 8700 Leoben