Pilot Plant Center PAZ

From monomers to tailor-made components

The Fraunhofer Pilot Plant Center for Polymer Synthesis and Processing PAZ in Schkopau is a joint initiative of the Fraunhofer Institutes for Applied Polymer Research IAP in Potsdam-Golm and for Microstructures of Materials and Systems IMWS in Halle. We focus our efforts on scaling-up polymer synthesis and processing methods.

Both its technical capabilities and the bundling of competencies in both fields constitute the Pilot Plant center's unique selling point on the R&D market. At the Fraunhofer PAZ, new products and innovative technologies are developed along the entire value chain – from monomers, polymer synthesis and polymer processing, to testing made-to-measure components. Here, polymer synthesis and processing are closely intertwined.

With this focus on a near-industrial scale, we support our clients effectively in the implementation of research results into innovative products and processes.


Our services


  • development and adjustment of polymer systems
  • determination of thermodynamic and kinetic parameters of polymer synthesis
  • conversion of procedures from a laboratory synthesis scale into a pilot scale (up to 1000 L reactor volume)
  • optimization of the reaction control up to the process development
  • modeling/simulation and optimization of procedures and procedural steps
  • physical-chemical characterization of polymers
  • custom synthesis: production of small and test batches
  • development of formulas and synthesis routes on a laboratory scale
  • process development and scale-up
  • synthesis from sample amounts to tons



  • manufacture of fiber-reinforced and long-fiber-reinforced thermoplastic components
  • integrated numerical simulation
  • validation of fibers, matrix polymers and additives
  • compounding
  • processing in the injection molding
  • compounding and injection molding as a closed process

Our research topics

On a plant area of ​​approximately 1000 m2 and 700 m2 of office and laboratory space, we perform both polymer synthesis processes in solution, bulk, emulsion and suspension as well as various processing methods, including performing injection molding compounding (IMC). These systems have a high degree of online monitoring and are equipped with modern process control system (fieldbus technology) for process control.



Besides the development of new polymer systems and their transfer from the laboratory to the pilot plant scale, emphasis is beeing placed on process optimization in the the field of polymerization. The latter is carried out in collaboration with the corresponding department "Polymerization" at Martin Luther University in Halle.



Our processing activities are dedicated to the development of application specific thermoplastic compounds and prototype components with special reference to effects of processing on the material and structural properties.

You are invited to learn about our center of excellence and our staff, to test the equipment, to marvel at the new possibilities and to use it for your innovations!


Our equipment

  • modern multifunctional pilot plant for low- and high-viscosity polymer syntheses (−1 to 100 bar and 5 to 350 °C) with 15 main reactors (50 to 870 L)
  • single-screw and twin-screw kneader 100 L and 200 L
  • modern synthesis labs for low-and high-viscosity polymer syntheses
  • analytical measurement methods:
    • automatic dilution viscometry
    • measurement of particle size (laser diffraction)
    • rheology measuring technique (rotational rheometer [−120 to 400 °C])
    • double bond and end group determination by titration
    • GPC in various solvents (e. g. HIFP)
    • GC for residual monomer and residual solvent-determination
  • injection molding compounder
  • injection molding machine
  • co-rotating, freely configurable twin-screw extruder for different procedures

How to reach us

The pilot plant is located in the center of the Dow ValuePark Schkopau, 10 km south of Halle, in Saxony-Anhalt.
To Leipzig/Halle Airport it takes about 35 km, the nearest ICE station is Central Station Halle and Merseburg, 5 km away is the regional rail connection available.

Arriving by car

  • from the East/West: Exit A14 Halle/Peissen; B100 towards Halle;
    B91 towards Merseburg, in Schkopau follow the signs to Dow ValuePark (Gate 7)
  • from North/South: motorway A9 Leipzig West/Merseburg; B181 towards Merseburg; B91 towards Halle, in Schkopau follow the signs to Dow ValuePark follow (Gate 7)

Michael Bartke

Contact Press / Media

Prof. Dr.-Ing. Michael Bartke

Director | Pilot Plant Center PAZ

Value Park A 74
06258  Schkopau

Phone +49 3461 2598-120

Fax +49 3461 2598-105

Ulrich Wendler

Contact Press / Media

Dr. Ulrich Wendler

Head of department | Synthesis and Product Development

Value Park A 74
06258  Schkopau

Phone +49 3461 2598-210

Fax +49 3461 2598-105

Marcus Vater

Contact Press / Media

Dr.-Ing. Marcus Vater

Head of department | Scale-up and Pilot Testing

ValuePark® A 74
06258  Schkopau

Phone +49 3461 2598-230

Fax +49 3461 2598-105

Peter Michel

Contact Press / Media

Prof. Dr.-Ing. Peter Michel

Head of department | Polymer Processing

Fraunhofer-Institut für Mikrostruktur von Werkstoffen und Systemen IMWS
Walter-Hülse-Str. 1
06120  Halle (Saale)

Phone +49 345 5589-203