Growing the world of acrylics

Lucite International – In the early days of acrylic, Taiwanese people knew the material simply for its use in advertising signs. But things have changed dramatically since then thanks largely to our associate company in Taiwan, Kaohsiung Monomer Company’s (KMC’s), strong leadership, and its downstream department, which has worked tirelessly since being formed in 2005 to promote the unique design flexibility, performance qualities and potential value offered by acrylic.

Acrylics as an exciting, sustainable business opportunity

Building on the existing close working relationships with its sheet customers, fabricators and end-users, KMC’s downstream team is reinforcing its commitment to establishing an integrated service platform that links upstream and downstream manufacturers of acrylics in Taiwan to work together to promote acrylics as an exciting and sustainable business opportunity. Representing the downstream team, Bella Wang describes some of the most recent projects that are stimulating ideas and growing applications in this exciting arena.

High performance acrylic canopies

In 2017, the most important promotion of acrylic was based on its use for canopies and blinds in the building sector. Bella explained: “Our KMC color center developed a selection of color pastes, which we provided to our sheet customers so they could make the colored acrylic sheets.” Different from other materials, acrylic canopies are exceptionally strong and can be specified in any color imaginable. Not only do the canopies have high performance characteristics such as exceptional UV resistance, insulation against sound, durability and safety, they are aesthetically beautiful and therefore widely popular with designers and consumers alike. KMC has completed many successful installations since defining its joined up offer with customers and the building sector.

Taipei International Building, Construction and Decoration Exposition

Every year KMC participates in the Taipei International Building, Construction and Decoration Exposition to help users better understand that acrylic is an environmentally friendly material, which can be used widely across many different applications.

In 2017, using the theme of ‘energy saving, environmental protection, creative fashion’, the KMC downstream team exhibited a wide range of acrylic applications alongside its customers. Bella said: “Our exhibits were even more imaginative and varied than ever and covered outdoor building materials, interior decoration, acrylic engraving, lighting, handrail design, aquaria applications, furniture, and home appliances. We also showed the winning works from our annual Acrylic Design Contest (ADC), and arranged for live demonstrations of handmade art carvings in acrylic. It was fascinating to watch visitors really experience and understand first-hand from what we were showing that the applications for acrylic are so wide and it really does play a leading role in all our lives.”

Acrylic at the House of the 2018 Taiwan Lantern Festival

KMC is constantly searching for new and different opportunities to promote the unique characteristics and advantages of acrylic. This year, the Taiwan Architects Association has invited the company to display acrylic in the ‘green building’, House of the 2018 Taiwan Lantern Festival. Bella explained: “It was an honor to be approached by the Taiwan Architects Association and we joined up with some downstream manufacturers to create a display featuring eight color stain-resistant mirrors, some marble pattern sheet, embedded sheet and a colorful canopy. The beautiful visual effect was very well received by visitors.”

Another exciting recent achievement for acrylic was it being specified for the decoration of the Taipei 101 observatory, where it was used with colored LEDs to create an eye-catching focus for the city’s most famous building. KMC worked with a downstream customer to create and deliver the installation, which truly demonstrated both the beauty and performance qualities of using acrylic with light.

After a busy and successful 2017 and great start to 2018 KMC is fully committed to continuing its work to lead and inspire the sustainable development of the acrylic industry in Taiwan.

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