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17. September 2010

Colorful, resilient and environmentally friendly: Floor coverings made from Lanxess Perbunan and Krynac rubbers

Many people have long since stopped seeing environmental protection solely in terms of nature conservation. For some years now, consumers and experts alike have also been interested in the emissions to which they may be exposed in building interiors. The European Commission has therefore called on governments to ensure that by 2010 half of their construction projects comply with a range of progressive environmental criteria.

Rubber floor coverings from Weinheim-based company nora systems GmbH are ideal in this respect. They include coverings made from special grades of extremely low-emission Perbunan and Krynac Lanxess rubbers. In addition to being highly resilient and wear-resistant, nora products also carry numerous environmental labels such as the well-known Blue Angel issued by German and other environmental and consumer organizations. Part of the Lanxess stand and the complete stand of Dr. Gupta Verlag at K 2010 will have a rubber floor covering from nora systems.

Colors to lead the way
“Rubber floor coverings from our customer nora systems are a real eye-catcher in many buildings,” says Peter Wolf, Key Account Manager EMEA in Lanxess’ Technical Rubber Products business unit. “Their colors help give structure to shops, office vestibules, foyers, hall areas and corridors, they create a specific visual and often even artistic impression, they liven up otherwise nondescript rooms and they frequently help to create room ensembles that spur the imagination, for example providing a vibrant setting for permanent museum exhibits,” he adds.

Comfortable, plasticizer and halogen-free
What’s more, rubber floor coverings offer a whole host of benefits for property developers. Unlike PVC products, they do not need to contain either plasticizers or halogen. They are also slip-resistant, feel pleasantly warm underfoot and retain their elastic properties. In addition to being comfortable to stand and walk on, they offer good footfall sound insulation and last far longer than other elastic floor coverings in busy areas such as airport terminals. This in turn helps conserve resources.

“As you can see, high demands are placed on the elastomer raw materials in these products,” says Hans Magg, rubber specialist at Lanxess. Ideally, elastomer floor coverings should be as wear-resistant as stone floors, demonstrate the same resistance to cleaning agents and help minimize damage in the event of a fire. Last but not least, they should not emit chemicals that are harmful to human health, even over long periods of use in building interiors. ”At Lanxess we are meeting this challenge head on. We are helping nora systems achieve its goal of ensuring that its products comply with strict regulations such as those of the AgBB (Committee for the Health-Related Evaluation of Building Products). We are continuously fine-tuning our process engineering, including as early as the synthetic rubber production process. This is an ongoing strategy to which every member of the team is committed,” continues the rubber expert.

“We are therefore particularly pleased that nora systems already carries a whole host of environmental labels for the quality of its floor coverings – including our elastomers!” he points out. In addition to the Blue Angel, these include a certificate from BRE Certification Ltd, a seal of quality from the Fresenius Institute and Greenguard Indoor Air Quality Certification. nora systems GmbH has also joined the U.S. Green Building Council and, since a voluntary audit in 1996, has had the right to carry the European EMAS (Eco-Management and Audit Scheme) logo. “Now that tendering legislation has been adapted to environmental requirements throughout Europe, and even prior to this, people have become aware that investments in the environment can pay off quickly with the support of a strong partner,” sums up Peter Wolf.

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