Insights from the Adhesive Technology Conference in Germany

For the 20th time, the “Joint Research in Adhesives Bonding Technology” colloquium took place in Würzburg (Germany). 230 participants discussed their research results, new developments and challenges together. From the many interesting and informative presentations on the first day, four trends pointing the way to the future will be revealed.

For the 20th time, the “Joint Research in Adhesive Bonding Technology” colloquium took place in Würzburg (Germany), organized by Dechema e.V. and the Joint Committee Adhesive Bonding Technology. This year, 230 participants from renowned companies and research institutes discussed their research results, new developments and challenges. Based on the jointly developed roadmap, current projects on the topics of improved manufacturing, prediction of ageing effects and behavior under dynamic stress as well as validation of simulation models and methods were presented.    The adhesives market is a very large and important market in Germany with a turnover of around 1.86 billion euro in the production of approx. 1.5 million tons of adhesive (as of 2018). In a global perspective, almost 14 million tons of adhesives were consumed worldwide with the most important industries being transportation, packaging, electronics and the construction sectors.   From the many interesting and informative presentations, the following trends become visible:
  • Biobased adhesives continue to be of interest because the adhesives market is less price-driven than traditional plastics processing and because the required medium production volumes can be covered with renewable raw materials (source: Fraunhofer IFAM). 
  • For the CO2 balance, the layer thickness of the adhesive is a very important variable. Even if the production and processing of an adhesive such as epoxy or polyurethane has a large GWP (Greenhouse Warming Potential), a low layer thickness contributes to the fact that the GWP in the individual application is very low (source: tff, University of Kassel).  
  • Multi-material design is becoming increasingly popular. The high manufacturing costs of CFRP, for example, lead to hybridization concepts that use the right material in the right place (source: LWF, University of Paderborn).   
  • Pre-coatable adhesives and adhesive tapes are increasingly in demand and developed because a reproducible application can easily be ensured (source: various manufacturers and institutes).  
  • The models for the design of adhesive joints between hybrid materials have already been validated several times and are being applied. Following this work, the prediction of the service life in dynamic and impact loading is making great progress in modelling, but also in measurement technology for the determination of characteristic values. 
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