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PolyOne Opens New Technology Center
6 years, 2 months ago Posted in: Industry News 1

By Dan Hockensmith, PLASTICS NEWS

Lt Gov. Mary Taylor and state Rep. Matt Lundy, D-Elyria, listen to David Rosendale, director of technology for PolyOne Corp. as they tour the company’s new $3 million facility on Walker Road that was unveiled Thursday in Avon Lake. (CT photo by Bruce Bishop.)

AVON LAKE, OHIO (May 12, 3:55 p.m. ET) — Compounder and color concentrates maker PolyOne Corp. has opened its 10th global innovation center, at its Avon Lake headquarters.

The $3 million design facility will support PolyOne’s global specialty platform customers with leading-edge capabilities for application development, testing, process optimization and color matching, officials said at the May 12 grand opening.

Chairman, President and CEO Steve Newlin noted that the Ohio gathering followed closely the January opening of PolyOne’s ninth innovation center in Gaggenau, Germany.

“We’re hands-on, and that’s what this center is all about,” he said at the Avon Lake event. “We take a partnering approach to solving and preventing problems with our customers.

“We try to approach our business in a creative yet practical manner,” he added. “We want to help our customers create and invest in the next generation of materials. We’re not going to invest in anything if there’s not a market for it.”

PolyOne’s network of innovation centers includes four facilities in North America, three in Asia and three in Europe.

Customers visiting the Ohio center will interact with PolyOne’s engineers in real time to streamline the product development cycle and foster innovation. They also will have access to PolyOne’s adjacent vinyl laboratory, which in 2010 assisted with about 400 development projects.

The innovation center can handle a variety of materials, from traditional olefins to polyether ether ketone (PEEK) resin, officials said, and supply customers with samples from 5-25 pounds.

The center features reception and conference areas with framed modern art works on the walls where customers can relax, brainstorm, and work; a showroom area to help generate ideas; and a color chip display room.

Customers will be able to obtain real-time color matches, complete with sample chips, during their visits to the center.

The operations area includes three Coperion twin-screw extruders with multiple pelletization and feeding options, two Boy and one Milacron injection molding machines with clamping forces of 20-100 tons; “select application” capability for sheet, film and bottles; measurement capabilities; and a clean room/FDA development area.

“The equipment that we have for molding and extrusion technology enables us to create [samples] specifically designed to meet our customers’ needs,” Craig Nikrant, president of PolyOne’s Global Specialty Engineered Materials division, said at the open house.

The interactive visitors’ area includes: a showroom for chips and display areas for parts a “creative collaboration area,” a conference room with a view of the operations floor and two customer offices.

“This center has been built with one goal in mind: helping our customers succeed,” John Van Hulle, president of PolyOne’s Global Color, Additives and Inks unit, said at the opening. “Ultimately, the success of this center will be measured in one way: Does it really drive customer success? We really think that … the answer will be a really resounding, “Yes!’”

According to the company, all furniture and seating are Greenguard Environmental Institute certified, which means that products have passed tests and emissions standards for reduced chemical exposure and improved indoor air quality.

All laminate work surfaces have a “green” core of recycled wheat board, while task chairs have a Cradle to Cradle Gold rating from McDonough Braungart Design Chemistry based on their use of environmentally friendly materials, recycled materials and renewable energy in manufacturing.

Carpeting includes PolyOne’s Geon vinyl compound material and up to 72 percent recycled content; wall coverings are made with recycled materials, and the main wall covering is Greenguard certified.

Also attending the May 12 opening were Ohio Lt. Gov. Mary Taylor, State Rep. Matt Lundy, D-Elyria, Avon Lake Mayor Karl Zuber, and about a dozen PolyOne customers, as well as about 30 employees.

About PolyOne

PolyOne Corporation, with annual revenues of more than $2.7 billion, is a leading global provider of specialized polymer materials, services and solutions. Headquartered outside of Cleveland, Ohio USA, PolyOne has operations around the globe. For additional information on PolyOne, visit our new Web site at

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