OMNOVA Solutions Recognizes Employee Innovations with 2012 Technology Awards

Aug 01, 2013, 08:30 ET from OMNOVA Solutions Inc.

FAIRLAWN, Ohio, Aug. 1, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- (NYSE: OMN) – OMNOVA Solutions today announced its 2012 Technology Award recipients. This annual award program recognizes exemplary technological contributions by associates in OMNOVA's research and development, sales and marketing, technical service, operations, product management and communications organizations.

These innovations in product development, process improvement and sustainability are positively impacting customers in many of OMNOVA's served markets including performance chemicals for oil and natural gas drilling, elastomeric modification, paper and tape applications, as well as coated fabrics for vacuum-formed and mass transit seating and laminates for luxury floor tile.

Recipients hail from across OMNOVA's global operations, including its Corporate Headquarters in Fairlawn, Ohio; Performance Chemicals business segment facilities in Akron, Ohio; Mogadore, Ohio; Chester, South Carolina; and Fitchburg, Massachusetts, as well as Villejust and Le Havre, France. OMNOVA's Engineered Surfaces business segment is also well-represented with Technology Award winners from its facilities in Auburn, Pennsylvania; Monroe, North Carolina; Columbus, Mississippi; Shanghai, China; and Rayong, Thailand.

"As a global company, we are continually taking actions that will enhance the value we deliver to our customers and lead to profitable growth," said Kevin McMullen, OMNOVA Solutions' Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. "The cornerstone of these efforts is the enhancement of our existing competencies, as well as the development of new, sustainable products and processes for the future. These outstanding innovation teams have clearly strengthened our already robust and diverse technology base, positioning us to further meet the needs of the markets we serve and demonstrating our commitment as a responsible member of the communities in which we operate."

Innovation titles, summaries and recipients are as follows:

Powder Micro-Particles for Oilfield Applications
Category: New Product Development/Commercialization

Mark BishopAkron, Ohio Global Technology Center
Dan Bode – Field Sales
Bill BrownMogadore, Ohio
Dr. Nick TriantafillopoulosFairlawn, Ohio
Dr. I. John WestermanAkron, Ohio Global Technology Center

This innovation team successfully developed a powder-based polymer for use in high-performance water-based oil drilling fluids. When formulated as a component in drilling fluids, this unique offering maintains well integrity and seals openings within the shaft to preserve the valuable raw materials.

PVC Products for Vacuum-Formed Seating Applications
Category: New Product Development/Commercialization

Kimi WangShanghai, China
Lu Zhen HaiShanghai, China

This team effectively developed two constructions of OMNOVA coated fabrics for use in vacuum-formed seating applications. These new supported (fabric-backed) and unsupported PVC formulations enable four-way stretching and good elongation under high temperatures, which are key steps in the vacuum-forming process. Vacuum-formed products are used to create seating for industrial vehicles, heavy trucks, golf carts, lawn equipment, motorcycles and bicycles.

NovaCryl™ PSP 160 Pressure Sensitive Adhesive
Category: New Product Development/Commercialization

Jeff AguinagaFitchburg, Massachusetts
Douglas W. HarperChester, South Carolina
Timothy M. SaddowChester, South Carolina
Kaitlyn SalmondFitchburg, Massachusetts

Building on one of OMNOVA's core competencies, this team developed NovaCryl™ PSP 160 pressure sensitive adhesive (PSA) for use in self-wound tapes, labels, vinyl graphics, and peel and stick applications. This new chemistry features a high solids composition that enables improved runability when applied to paper or film substrates and smoother lay-down at the point of use. It also utilizes APE-free surfactants and is FDA 175.105, FDA 176.170 and 176.180 compliant for indirect food contact.

Mass Transit Seating
Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART) Project
Category: New Product Development/Commercialization

Ronnie BellColumbus, Mississippi 
Patti Draper FrancisFairlawn, Ohio
Brian GrantFairlawn, Ohio
Rob MooreColumbus, Mississippi
Steve RyeColumbus, Mississippi

Considered one of the world's leaders in environmental awareness, the San Francisco Bay Area sought to reupholster its fleet of rapid transit rail cars. Led by this core team, OMNOVA developed a custom designed PreVaill Transit™ upholstery featuring the Company's proprietary PreFixx® Protective Finish, which provides enhanced durability and cleanability. The upholstery's durable vinyl construction proved to be a more sustainable solution compared to the existing wool seating. OMNOVA's PreVaill Transit upholstery has an expected life of 2 to 3 times more than wool seating, which must be replaced every 3 years. This eliminates approximately 1.5 million pounds of waste from being sent to the landfill over that time.

Phthalate Plasticizer Alternative for Laminate Flooring
Category: Competitive Advantage Through Enhanced Environmental Sustainability

Mike EasterlingAuburn, Pennsylvania
Jamie RobertsonAuburn, Pennsylvania
Drew SchaefferAuburn, Pennsylvania
Roxanne E. SmithFairlawn, Ohio

To meet the needs of a major producer of luxury floor tiles, OMNOVA developed a vinyl laminate formulation free of phthalate plasticizers. This involved reformulating the film and pigments, which required a number of trials, as well as significant technical analysis and implementation. The team worked with the customer to successfully convert 100% of its business with OMNOVA to the new environmentally-preferred formulation.

Sunbond® 3410 Paperboard Coating Latex
Category: New Product Development/Commercialization

Rick Glisson – Field Sales
Ed MillerAkron, Ohio Global Technology Center
Sam MobleyChester, South Carolina
Frank SchumannAkron, Ohio Global Technology Center
Manny Sibila – Field Sales
Joy UntchAkron, Ohio Global Technology Center
James L. Vaughn, Ph.D. – Fairlawn, Ohio
Michael YanutolaChester, South Carolina

This team developed Sunbond® 3410 latex as a direct response to a need in the market for an FDA (21 CFR 176.170 and 21 CFR 176.180) and BFR compliant, non-styrene butadiene paperboard coating for indirect food contact. Sunbond 3410 offers enhanced runability during application, superior strength, an APE-free composition and low VOCs. This product can be utilized for applications that include cereal boxes, microwaveable frozen food packaging and ice cream cartons.

Sunigum® P2100 Elastomer
Category: New Product Development/Commercialization

Stephane Carrere – Villejust, France European Technology Center
Sophie Drillieres, Ph.D. – Villejust, France European Technology Center 
Christophe MaillardLe Havre, France
Eric Medard – Villejust, France European Technology Center
Bernard Nigen – Villejust, France European Technology Center

This innovation team developed OMNOVA's new Sunigum® P2100 elastomer for plasticized PVC gaskets commonly used for dynamic applications, like windows and doors. As a differentiated technological response to a current European market trend for automotive and construction applications, Sunigum P2100 enables the gasket to return to its original shape after being compressed for a period of time. It also allows gaskets to be produced in a variety of colors due to its enhanced UV stability.

Facility Waste Reduction Project (Chester, South Carolina)
Category: Competitive Advantage Through Enhanced Environmental Sustainability

Terry GreeneChester, South Carolina
Charles RobbinsChester, South Carolina
Joey TownsendChester, South Carolina

This innovation team implemented a process for using a manufacturing by-product as a food source for the facility's biological wastewater treatment system. This simultaneously reduces the plant's total waste produced while increasing the overall effectiveness of its wastewater treatment process.

Gravure Press Capability Profile/Capacity Transfer (Rayong, Thailand)
Category: Core Competence Building

Jane BrechtMonroe, North Carolina
Tob A. CossFairlawn, Ohio
Rodney Cuevas – Rayong, Thailand
Mike EasterlingAuburn, Pennsylvania
William GuillotMonroe, North Carolina
David KempfAuburn, Pennsylvania
Wannapa Muensri – Rayong, Thailand
Nattika Ruangprim – Rayong, Thailand
Roxanne E. SmithFairlawn, Ohio
Sarut Wijakkhanarwut – Rayong, Thailand

This cross-functional, global team fully reviewed the laminate film printing capabilities and capacity at OMNOVA's Rayong, Thailand Engineered Surfaces facility to support the transition of product manufacturing to Thailand for a major luxury flooring tile customer. They used LEAN SixSigma continuous improvement methodologies to recognize areas for improvement and implement changes, and conducted multiple trials to effectively create the designs specified by the customer.

OMNOVA Solutions Inc. is a technology-based company with 2012 sales of $1.1 billion and a global workforce of approximately 2,300. OMNOVA is an innovator of emulsion polymers, specialty chemicals, and functional and decorative surfaces for a variety of commercial, industrial and residential end uses. Visit OMNOVA Solutions on the internet at

NOVACRYL and PREVAILL TRANSIT are trademarks of OMNOVA Solutions.
PREFIXX, SUNIGUM and SUNBOND are registered trademarks of OMNOVA Solutions.

SOURCE OMNOVA Solutions Inc.