In the field of "Rubber/Elastomers", the TITK deals with application-oriented research topics and direct questions from industrial partners. The focus is on fibre reinforcement and the functionalisation of rubber and thermoplastic elastomers (TPE).
Innovative developments in the field of rubber reinforcement deal, for example, with approaches to increase the proportion of renewable raw materials in rubber. Fibre reinforcement with natural fibres and cellulose can be used to specifically influence the properties.
The focal points of development in this area are:
- Exploiting the reinforcement potential of natural fibres and lyocell for rubber and TPEs
- Approaches to increasing the proportion of renewable raw materials in rubber
- Effects of anisotropic fibre reinforcement in elastomers
Other topics are the optimisation of adhesion between rubber and metal or the bonding of inert rubber to textile reinforcements.
The following research work can be cited as examples:
In the case of elastomer materials such as TPE or thermoplastic polyurethanes (TPU), research work also focuses on modifying the properties. Examples of successful developments are reversible water-swellable elastomers for seals, anisotropic properties through directional fibre reinforcements, electrically conductive elastomers, but also elastomer materials with chromatic effects.
In addition to pure material developments, special problems can also be investigated during processing in injection moulding or extrusion processes. For this purpose, the TITK has modern mechanical equipment in the technical centre. Furthermore, a wide range of testing elastomers can be covered.