COMPOSENS consists of 7 different French and Belgian institutions with complementary domains of expertise spanning the entire life cycle biocomposites from the cultivation and refinement of plant feedstocks to the production of composite materials. COMPOSENS members also have expertise on specific topics including control of sensory characteristics and analysis of the physical chemistry of composite materials.
COMPOSENS will use environmentally sound processes to develop materials that meet the specifications of industries in the Franco-Belgian border region. These include “clean” fibre treatments, as well as methods which result in improve sensory characteristics. COMPOSENS will also explore the pre-impregnation of natural fibres (i.e. coating the fibres with polymer resin prior to blending) and the use of wood-polymer mixtures in additive manufacturing, also known as 3D printing.
The Franco-Belgian border region contains a variety of actors from every level of the plastics and biocomposites industrial value chains, from agricultural cultivators to manufacturing plants. The commercial enterprises in these chains which already use biocomposites or would like to begin using them (and particularly the small- and medium-sized enterprises), stand to benefit from the development of new products and technological solutions. It is the ambition of COMPOSENS to respond to the needs of these enterprises using the specialisation of its members in applied science to develop innovative solutions which are transferable to the reality of regional commercial enterprises.
For the benefits of COMPOSENS to be fully realised for the industrial stakeholders in the Franco-Belgian border region, it is imperative that the two countries continue their cooperation in supoprt of the project.