Davis-Standard: R&D Facility in Texas Bustling with Activity

Customer activity for both product trials and extrusion seminars has been on the rise at the Davis-Standard/Jorgenson Machinery laboratory in Houston, Texas. The lab, a partnership between Davis-Standard, LLC and Jorgenson Machinery Corporation, has seen a continual increase in lab utilization and inquiries since opening in 2005. Davis-Standard customers from across the U.S. and as far as the U.K. have come to run product trials in the areas of sheet, blown film, cast film, compounding and other processes. The lab is equipped with the full range of Davis-Standard Killion laboratory and small systems equipment as well as film gauges, tensile testers, melt indexers, gel counters, analytical systems, corona treaters and temperature control/chillers.
According to Emery Jorgenson, lab manager and owner of Jorgenson Machinery, Killion Laboratories is widely used for material and application development as well as proprietary trials. ‘Customers are pleased with the size of the lab, range of equipment and overall capabilities. They are able to do proof of concept testing that would otherwise cost them thousands of dollars more if they tried to do it in house,’ explained Jorgenson. ‘We are increasing our number of trials each month and continue to receive an impressive number of inquiries. Recent trial activity includes a three-layer cast trial with EVOH, a multi-layer coating and paper laminating trial, and a three-layer blown film trial with PVOH. In some instances, customers ask us to run trials even if they are not able to be there.’
Due to its proximity to the Houston airport, technical capabilities and set-up, the lab is also becoming a popular location for extrusion seminars focused on specific extrusion disciplines such as blown film and gel counting. The gel counting seminar in July was so popular that a second seminar was scheduled for September. This seminar focused on gel analysis using a gel counter for quality control testing of film on a cast or blown film station. Participants learned about the composition of gels, how they are created, and solutions for dealing with them.
Simon Dominey, manager of Davis-Standard’s specialty systems, Killion and laboratory business groups, is pleased with the lab’s progress. ‘We have customers from across the country using or interested in using the lab. We have several inquiries from Europe and Japan, and have completed a trial for a UK company,’ he said. ‘The lab is continuing to evolve as we upgrade and add new equipment and services. In the meantime, we are able to accommodate just about any process including tensile testing for film, off-line profiling to measure film thickness, gel analysis and several other specialized applications.’

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