One of ReAgent’s most recent endeavours is linking up with the world-renowned chemical giants, BASF, to help repack and distribute their innovative alternative to traditional paving materials – Elastopave®.
In case you haven’t heard, BASF is a global company that has dedicated itself to creating a sustainable future. Founded in 1865 in Mannheim, Germany, BASF has over 150 years of pioneering chemistry under its belt and a vast array of industries in its repertoire, from automotive and pharmaceuticals to agriculture and even nutrition.
Recently, BASF has focussed their efforts on tackling increasing urbanisation by providing a ‘new concept for infrastructure.’ This new concept goes by the name Elastopave® and ReAgent is proud to be involved in it.
What is Elastopave®?
Elastopave® from BASF is a polyurethane (PU) resin bound system that will provide a sustainable alternative to things like tarmac and asphalt. It is water permeable, extremely durable and provides a protective as well as a decorative finish to a range of surfaces like patios, pavements, stone carpets and factory floors.
Elastopave® is characterised by a number of benefits. It is:
- High-strength and can withstand heavy loads after just 24 hours of being installed
- Lightfast so its colour and vibrancy won’t fade over the years
- UV-stable so that it won’t crack or deteriorate under the sun
- Porous by allowing water to run through it rather than sit on top of it
- Diverse and can blend into any environment, be it a precinct or car park
BASF isn’t cutting any corners with the bespoke formulation used in Elastopave®. Not only is it a durable surface that will stand the test of time, but it’s also a decorative resin that can be adjusted to complement its surroundings.
Water Permeable Surface
One particular feature that sets Elastopave® apart from the rest is its porosity. Instead of solidly sitting on top of a surface, this blend of minerals, polyurethane and aggregate is filled with tiny interstices that both air and water can migrate through.
There are huge benefits associated with an open-pored material like this, including the:
- Reduction of wastewater charges
- Replenishment of groundwater reserves
- Reduction of flooding risks
The success of BASF’s water permeable surface is shown in the city of Hangzhou in China, where heavy rainfall keeps the population on constant flood alert.
By using Elastopave®, however, Hangzhou is fast becoming a ‘sponge city’ where surface water drains through the PU binding system and into the ground. This not only prevents puddles, it also prevents floods and even preserves the excess water for future use.
Sustainable and Eco-Friendly
The crux of BASF’s corporate purpose is to utilise science to create innovative solutions that are beneficial to society, the planet and the future. No one articulates this aspiration better than the company itself:
“We combine economic success with environmental protection and social responsibility. Through research and innovation […] we create chemistry for a sustainable future.”
As with all of BASF’s inventions, Elastopave® is another feather in the hat of a sustainable, eco-friendly future that can be helped by technology rather than destroyed by it:
- 50% of Elastopave® is comprised of renewable resources
- The binder is not harmful to the natural environment
- It is certified with the CE mark for health, safety and environmental protection
- Elastopave® soaks up and retains surface water like rainfall
- The porous surface also helps to replenish aquifers
How is Elastopave® Manufactured?
This product is a combination of several elements, including polyurethane, minerals and aggregate. The resin itself hinges on polyurethane, a polymer that is comprised of organic units and carbamate links. Polyurethane has a wide resiliency range, making it well-suited to the Elastopave® product.
After its manufacture, the polyurethane resin is mixed with an aggregate. This can be sand, gravel, crushed stone or even recycled concrete. The aggregate used depends on where the product is being installed and how it is desired to look.
1K Polymer System
Polyurethane is usually made by mixing an isocyanate with a polyol. Isocyanate is a hazardous compound that can cause several chronic health effects, but BASF has eliminated this risk by mixing Elastopave® in the form of what is known as a pre-polymer.
This makes Elastopave® a 1K system, a.k.a. a one-component resin system. This is the unique selling point of the product because 1K systems are safer and easier to use than the common two-component resin systems (2K). They also require much less packaging and plastic, making the product more environmentally friendly.
As a 1K system, Elastopave® also cures with moisture in the air, meaning that it takes a similar amount of time to cure as conventional surfaces.
How ReAgent are Getting Involved
ReAgent feels very honoured to be part of this new concept by packing and distributing Elastopave® across the UK and Ireland. We buy in 1000kg quantities and then repack the product into 6kg buckets ready for shipment.
Our 40+ years in the chemical industry have made us experts at chemical repacking, and we offer this service on a range of products whether it’s a powder, liquid, paste or gel. ReAgent’s contract packing service is fast and efficient and utilises a range of high-quality packaging material.
As well as this, ReAgent’s in-house graphic designer was also involved in the design of BASF’s product labels for Elastopave®, which now appear on various pack sizes.
No matter how big or how small, ReAgent is always on-hand to provide your business with first-class services and industry-leading customer support. Simply contact us for more information or free technical advice, and we’ll be happy to talk about how we can help your business.