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TGM technology students receive Borealis Student Innovation Award 2019

photo: Awardees with the representative of Borealis f.l.t.r .: Paul Weiss, Vanessa Pichler, DI Klemens Reitinger MSc (TGM), Maximilian Hartmann, Viraj Rath, Anna-Maria Monks, DI Rudolf Wölfer (Borealis), Judith Nachbagauer

© GFKT

Now in its thirteenth year, the Borealis Student Innovation Award embodies the Borealis mission of Value Creation through Innovation by honouring the efforts of promising young students working in the fields of polyolefins and base chemicals. Three teams of students at TGM, a secondary school of technology in Vienna, recently received the Borealis Student Innovation Award 2019 for their outstanding diploma theses. The recipients were honoured at a festive ceremony at the Eschenbach Palace in Vienna, with over 150 guests attending. The awards were presented by Rudolf Wölfer, Head of Circular Economy Solutions Innovation Studio at Borealis.

“The Austrian polyolefins industry is among the most innovative sectors in the country. This makes it essential to promote the next generation of polyolefins innovators,” claims Borealis CEO Alfred Stern. “I am especially gratified to see that many TGM students have addressed circular economy-related challenges in their theses this year. Borealis is pleased to be able to publicly recognise these progressive and innovative efforts.”

Three award-winning research teams in 2019

Maximilian Hartmann and Viraj Rath, “Process monitoring in masterbatch production”
Company partner: Gabriel-Chemie Gesellschaft m.b.H.


This work aims to enhance efficiency and quality during the production of plastics. The colour measurement system developed by Hartmann and Rath enables real-time monitoring of the production of colour concentrates. Because potential errors can be documented during production, the amount of scrap and material loss can be largely minimised.

Vanessa Pichler and Paul Weiss, “Quality control and recycling potential of pressure pipes”
Company partner: agru Kunststofftechnik Gesellschaft m.b.H.

Pichler and Weiss address the use of recyclate material in drinking water pipelines. The team investigated the viability of using industrial scrap plastic in pressure pipes. Reducing the amount of virgin material required for such pipes would help save resources and enhance plastics circularity.

Anna-Maria Monks and Judith Nachbagauer: “Optimising compostable food packaging”
Company partner: Gabriel-Chemie Gesellschaft m.b.H.

These two polymer engineers have investigated how to significantly reduce the amount of single-use plastic food packaging in circulation by developing more sustainable material alternatives. They seek to optimise compostable packaging and develop biopolymers which are biodegradable even outside of industrial composting systems.


photo: Awardees with the representative of Borealis f.l.t.r .: Paul Weiss, Vanessa Pichler, DI Klemens Reitinger MSc (TGM), Maximilian Hartmann, Viraj Rath, Anna-Maria Monks, DI Rudolf Wölfer (Borealis), Judith Nachbagauer

© GFKT

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photo: Awardees with the representative of Borealis f.l.t.r .: Paul Weiss, Vanessa Pichler, DI Klemens Reitinger MSc (TGM), Maximilian Hartmann, Viraj Rath, Anna-Maria Monks, DI Rudolf Wölfer (Borealis), Judith Nachbagauer © GFKT
photo: Hartmann (left) and Rath (right) measuring the colour of a polymer filament photo: GFKT
photo: Weiss (left) and Pichler (right) examining pipes under the microscope photo: © GFKT
photo: Monks (left) and Nachbagauer (right) in on-site composting experiment photo: GFKT
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