Sustainability in industrial products
Buitink Technology finds it important to give extra inputs to
sustainability of the society and the environment on top of the
minimum requirements by law, already imposed by the government.
Besides certain obvious and easy to reach internal measures (as
for example separation of wastes, saving lighting, digital
treatment of documents etc.) we focus on the following main
- Reuse/ recycling of PVC coated polyester fabric
- Reuse/ recycling of ETFE foil
- Development of sustainable products
PVC coated polyester fabric
Often we (and other companies) use PVC coated polyester fabric
(PVC fabric) for various products. Think about covering canvas,
truck canvas, tents, tensed membranes etcetera.
Example of the different layers
of a PVC coated polyester fabric
PVC fabric is widely used for several reasons:
- Relatively low costs;
- Sustainability (many products that are realized from this
product are based on a lifetime superior to 10 years or even
- High availability;
- Numerous colors available;
- Various surface treatments possible (dirt repulsive, fire
- Easy to process and to print on.
Besides PVC fabric we also use ETFE foil. Usually, the ETFE foil
is used in air-cushion roofs. These are permanent constructions
(there are ETFE air-cushion roofs that are more than 25 years
Also, residual material and cutting wastes from ETFE (ethyl
tetra fluoro ethyleen) foil processing, are granulated and returned
to the producer for recycling. As ETFE foil is a homogenous product
(and not a composite) there cycling process itself is much simpler
than the Texyloop process; the ETFE foil is granulated and again
extruded to make new ETFE foil.
Besides the recycling of ETFE foil, we have plans to use ETFE
foil as raw material that is produced in an environmentally
This environment-friendly production method of ETFE granulate
soon will be presented by the producer Dyneon. They have introduced
a production process free of APFO (ammonium perfluoroctanat).
The first ETFE foil has already been produced with this
technique and we are testing the properties of the foil (e.g. on
load-bearing capacity, the feasibility of printing etc.).
The producer confirmed that the properties of the ETFE foil have
remained the same (sustainability, fire behavior, and
Development of sustainable and environmentally friendly
We are committed for a long time to the development of new
products and production processes. Various factors determine our
choice to develop a given product or to modify a production
process. A major criterium is the sustainability of the product and
its positive influence on the environment.
Criteria for a sustainable and/or environmentally friendly
- The product collects waste materials and prevents these to be
diffused in the environment.
- The product is produced in a sustainable way, the impact on the
environment is significantly lower than in the conventional
- The use of this product gives a better protection of the
environment then existing alternatives.
In the past years, we have developed following products
complying with above criteria
- Mobile water-resistant floor (categorie A)
This innovation refers to a mobile liquid collection system made
of textile surrounded by inflatable tubes for e.g. the collection
and storage of dirty water from a truck and car cleaning. This is a
relatively simple, cheap and mobile system that reduces the
threshold for recovering dirty water and prevents illegal
- ETFE air-cushion roofs (categorie B and C)
The ETFE air-cushion roofs are an alternative to (heavy) glass
roofs. For sure, when combined with a sun regulating system this
system has less impact on the environment than an alternative in
- Membrane and inflatable moulds (categorie B and C)
One development in which we invest time and energy is the
realization of molds made of fabrics that replace the traditional
formwork or can be an alternative for pre-fabricated products.
Basically, a lightweight mound can be built on location and be
covered with lightweight concrete. Not only construction time is
reduced but also more complex (BLOB) shapes can be made. This
process can be realized on site such that no pre-fabricated
elements have to be transported to the construction site (saving
ton-kilometers). Large size road transport of pre-fabricated
elements is expensive. Besides cement centers usually are to
be found near the construction sites (contrary to pre-fabrication
- (Insulated) membraneconstruction (categorie C)
The material used for tensed membrane constructions is very
lightweight (about 1kg/m2) and can be completely recycled even
after many years of use.
There are even more recent developments using a double skin with
insulation in between. The final result is a building with very
good thermal insulation.