'Material Selection 17/18' is the second material trend book by BASF that offers a global perspective on trends and materials. It presents innovative plastics solutions that help customers face these trends. The trend book was developed jointly by the designfabrik experts in Tokyo, Shanghai and Ludwigshafen.
The trend researchers and designers of the plastics division from both regions worked together to provide ideas and inspiration for future product developments for customers. ''We do not see trends as singular phenomena but as a chain of developments. Two main trends emerge as a result of this chain reaction: 'Morphology' and 'Mindfulness'. We believe that they will be majorly influential", says Alex Horisberger, designfabrik Ludwigshafen, BASF. "With this study, we offer customers a way to materialise these trends."
The trend study is exclusively available to designers and other creatives of customers and potential customers as part of a scheduled personal presentation. It cannot be bought or requested separately.
'Morphology' – materials for a changing world
The end of certainty as we know it, is defining for our times. The only certainty lies in seeing opportunity in uncertainty – and not to perceive it as a threat. In times of accelerating changes, the speed of technological innovations increases significantly, too. From traditional combustion engines to cars powered by electricity, from cars traditionally controlled by steering to autonomous driving: Materials are needed that can keep up with these dynamic changes in a three-dimensional space. For these applications in particular, BASF presents a new film made of TPU (thermoplastic polyurethane) with a flexible coating, which could possibly be used in automotive interiors or furniture.
'Mindfulness' means more attention – for oneself and the environment
The second trend in the BASF study is based on an increased awareness for traces of human behavior and action. Both are traceable in the sediments of the earth; data, things and residue remain on this planet. The desire for materials fulfilling customers' demands without leaving traces is growing. Here, BASF offers a biobased particle foam which is very robust and also fully compostable. The material is attractive where sensitive or heavy goods should be protected by biobased and biodegradable transport packaging.
"When ideas are ready to challenge the future, our material solutions are ready to enable designs shaping the future," summarizes Johnny Zhang, designfabrik Shanghai, BASF, the two trends.
Material study supports global concept for innovations with and for customers
As recently announced, BASF is combining its competencies globally in design, trend research and simulation in the plastics division even more. The resulting centers in Europe, Asia and the US are enabling an even faster launch of innovations across industries such as automotive, consumer goods and construction. The trend book supports the creative ideas of customers and demonstrates where materials in design concepts can produce the next innovation.
The designfabrik is renowned as the central hub for interdisciplinary exchanges between designers and BASF materials experts. Founded in 2006 in Ludwigshafen, it can look back on more than ten successful years of providing consultations for designers, developers and engineers in Europe. In 2014, the first designfabrik in Asia was opened in Tokyo in order to meet the requirements of the local markets and trends.
About BASF's Performance Materials division
BASF's Performance Materials division encompasses the entire materials know-how of BASF regarding innovative, customized plastics under one roof. Globally active in four major industry sectors – transportation, construction, industrial applications and consumer goods – the division has a strong portfolio of products and services combined with a deep understanding of application-oriented system solutions. Key drivers of profitability and growth are our close collaboration with customers and a clear focus on solutions. Strong capabilities in R&D provide the basis to develop innovative products and applications. In 2016, the Performance Materials division achieved global sales of €6.9 billion. More information online: www.performance-materials.basf.com.