UPM Developing New Wood Plastic Composite

16 December 2005

UPM is developing a new wood plastic composite that makes use of recyclable raw materials from sawmilling operations and the plywood industry.

The composite material manufactured from laminate edge trim is said to be durable and moisture-resistant, and is suitable for machine-tooling using the same methods as those used for wood.

“The material combines the best properties of the wood fibres and polymers. In the construction sector, our focus is on the joinery and house building industries. Germany and the UK, where windows are made from aluminium, wood and PVC plastic, are interesting markets. We want to position the new material somewhere between wood and PVC to compete mainly with PVC products,” tells Markku Koivisto, Venture Manager at UPM.

""UPM has already access to raw materials that hopefully gives us a competitive edge. The use of waste material also reduces the load on the environment”, Mr Koivisto adds.

The initial investment needed for developing the idea further include an extruder from Austria that would be suited to product development as well as small-scale production. The machine will be supplied at the end of December and installed at the Wood Products Division's premises in Lahti at the beginning of January. The goal is to achieve fast growth in production capacity.

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