The Borealis International Innovation Headquarters is located in Linz, Austria, close to the Danube River and approximately 200 kilometres west of Vienna. It is within easy reach of the industrial regions in southern Germany. Historically, industry in this area was centred on mining and steel, but now includes chemicals and pharmaceuticals, among other industries.
The Innovation Headquarters is home to state-of-the-art research facilities consisting of a catalyst plant utilising the proprietary Borealis Sirius Catalyst Technology, pilot plant for hydrocarbon production technologies, a high-tech polymerisation laboratory and industrial polymer compounding and conversion equipment for injection moulding, pipe extrusion, and film and fibre production. The polymer compounding facilities produce customer and development samples with a wide range of flexibility from 500g to 20 tonnes.
The core competencies at the Innovation Headquarters are small-scale polymerisation and product development of polypropylene (PP) and low-pressure polyethylene (PE) products for pipe, packaging, foam, automotive, solar and capacitor film applications. The catalyst plant utilising the proprietary Borealis Sirius Catalyst Technology underlines the Borealis position along the entire plastics value chain: from research and development into production of its own catalysts, to application-oriented development of innovative solutions in close co-operation with its customers. The main research activities concerning hydrocarbons and melamine also take place in Linz.
The Innovation Headquarters is also home to the Circular Economy Solutions Innovation Studio, which serves as a hub for research and development for novel circular polyolefins-based technologies and solutions.
Borealis, together with its shareholder OMV, supports the Plastics Engineering programme at the Johannes Kepler University in Linz. The programme's aim is to meet the demand of the Upper Austrian plastics industry for young researchers and engineers in the years to come.
At the Porvoo Innovation Centre, located in the biggest Nordic petrochemicals industrial park in Porvoo, Finland, the core innovative competencies are catalyst and process research and development. Porvoo is home to the Borstar® technology development, encompassing both the polyolefin process and catalysts.
Onsite, the Polyolefin Process Development group is in charge of leading the technology development of Borealis’ proprietary technologies. This team provides expert support for versatile process-related topics and contributes to IPR activities related to Borealis’ process technologies.
Fundamental catalyst development is conducted in the well-equipped Aurora laboratory, whilst scale-up of catalysts to commercial trials is performed in the catalyst research pilot plant. Process, catalyst and Borstar product designs are tested and scaled-up in the Borstar pilot plant, which consists of two lines, one for polyethylene and one for polypropylene.
The Porvoo Innovation Centre supports investment projects for Borstar technology and catalyst process development. Customer technical support is focused on extrusion coating and packaging applications with some customer support on Pipe and Energy business for local and Nordic customers.
The Swedish Innovation Centre is located in Stenungsund, Sweden, a west coast location close to the hub of the Swedish plastics industry, which hosts several leading players in high tech industries. The Stenungsund site encompasses a cracker and both high and low-pressure PE plants. The site has several decades of experience producing ultra-high purity polymers for high voltage cable applications as well as low-pressure polymers for pipe applications. Borealis' leading product brands include Borlink™, Visico™, Casico™, and Borcoat™.
The core innovative competency in Stenungsund is high-pressure polyethylene (HPPE) development, particularly for energy applications. This includes HPPE process technologies, cross-linking polymer technology and production of super clean compounds from monomer to final packaging, the cornerstone of the Borlink™ technology. Key functions of the Borealis Energy team are based on site, ensuring a strong link to innovation throughout the entire product range, including materials for cutting-edge technologies such as extra high voltage (EHV) and high voltage direct current (HVDC) power cables.
Inaugurated in 2018, the Stenungsund High Voltage Testing Laboratory is a state-of-the-art facility for testing cables offering alternate current (AC) and direct current (DC) simulation testing for the performance of commercial cable materials in the medium (MV), high (HV), and EHV ranges. When developing innovative new materials, testing is crucial to help ensure material safety and promote quality assurance. Within the framework of customer and value-chain cooperation, the HV testing centre can also open up an entire spectrum of new project types, and can accelerate the time to market for innovations.
In addition to its three European Innovation Centres, Borealis also innovates on a global level. Borouge, Borealis' joint venture with the Abu Dhabi National Oil Company, has its own Innovation Centre, which is strategically located in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates (UAE). The Borouge Innovation Centre is close to customers in the UAE and the Middle East region and to the world-scale polyolefins complex with Borstar® PP and PE production plants in Ruwais. Equipped with state-of-the-art tools for plastic processing and analysing, the core competencies are currently the development of pipe, film, moulding and wire and cable applications.
The Borouge Application Centre in China is located at Sandhill Plaza within the Zhangjiang High Tech Park in Shanghai. The application centre supports product development for the automotive business, and also provides technical services, application development and testing support for Borouge’s other marketing centres and customers in Asia.