Continuity through innovation

Research and development | 23/08/2019

A healthy dose of curiosity, a strong drive to create new products, and perseverance are essential ingredients for the Research & Development department at Kisuma.

New products

We are progressive and want to stay ahead of the competition. Our Research & Development colleagues are therefore constantly looking for opportunities to develop new applications. Nowadays, our products are mainly used in plastics applications, but the magnesium compounds are interesting for much more than just that.

Sustainable, efficient, and groundbreaking

The R&D department works according to the principle of co-creation. We define research topics that fit our mission and vision. As soon as we see opportunities for our existing or newly developed magnesium products, we seek out suitable collaboration partners. Of course, it also happens that such partners, usually potential clients, approach us. We engage in discussion with them to identify their needs. We respond to these with new developments. That sounds pretty simple, but it is not. These types of developments require a lot of time.

Why does it take so long?

When stepping into new territory, it is important to be careful. It is not just about the functionality of the product. During this phase, we also design the production process. We set high requirements for this. For example, it cannot have any impact on the environment. Next, we start work in the laboratory. We create samples, then analyze and adjust them. A sample is only sent to the client once we are completely satisfied with it. They then test the material to see if it is sufficient for their application. Conducting certain application tests sometimes takes many months, such as corrosion tests or weather-resistance tests. It often takes a long time before we hear whether a product meets the established requirements. It almost always takes several attempts to develop a suitable product together with the customer, but succeeding at innovation simply demands a careful pace.

At Kisuma, we believe that innovation ensures our continuity. Behind the scenes, we are hard at work on various projects, aiming to achieve groundbreaking results through the most sustainable and efficient means possible.

A reactor full of pills

One example of such a project is STEPWISE. Together with a number of partners, we are using European funding to develop a promising technology that will reduce the CO2 emissions of the steel industry, while simultaneously producing hydrogen (H2). This is done using Sorption Enhanced Water-Gas Shift (SEWGS) technology. This patented technology was developed by the Energy Research Centre of the Netherlands (ECN). Since 2011, we have been working with ECN, which is now part of TNO (the Netherlands Organisation for Applied Scientific Research). Our part in this collaboration is the development and production of the sorbent. These are pills that, in addition to hydrotalcite, contain other components that make it possible to capture CO2.

The STEPWISE project ran from May 2015 to April 2019. During this period, we created 4000 kg of these pills, which were used in a test installation in Sweden. This was quite a challenge, so we are very proud that we succeeded. More importantly, the STEPWISE project has shown that SEWGS technology is a cost-effective solution for reducing CO2 emissions from the steel industry. However, before the technology can be applied commercially, it will be necessary to carry out further research on a larger scale. There are also several other applications of the SEWGS technology. A number of initiatives have already been started for these, which Kisuma is involved in as well. We will keep you posted!

Co-create with us!

Would you like to know more about the possibilities of our magnesium compounds for your application? Please contact us!

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