Color, Culture and Chaos

"We all realized in 2009, we're connected -- we're really, really connected," says Tim December, group leader - R&D for BASF. "If one fails, hey, a lot of us are going down together. That was a big ah-hah moment for the planet."

"In the past the West has shown the direction and the East has followed," says Deep Bhattacharya, Eastman’s global transportation coatings leader. "We're about to see a change where the East will start showing the direction and we'll be the ones trying to develop solutions to meet those needs."

Imre Molnar, dean for College for Creative Studies in Detroit, Michigan, sees China and India as the new frontier for the automotive industry. "China might be the birthplace of a whole new language in car design that we're not able to predict," he says. India "is a market place that's far more comfortable with color –color and chaos."

"With all the cultures and all the different players, we need to work with the people and get the best out of every culture," December explains.

"We did all the easy stuff already and to improve the performance of the paint now or lower emissions, it's a lot more work. You need to work closely with your suppliers to make sure that they understand your needs when they're designing their products."

BASF has teamed with Eastman to provide Ford Motor Company with formulations that enhance paint performance while reducing the energy required.

"Eastman™ cellulose esters bring a unique set of properties to the coatings industry," says Erin Bernhardt, business manager - cellulosic & polyester polymers for Eastman. "They're about 60 percent bio-renewable content. They enable a future footprint that can reduce waste consumption, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and increase productivity.”

"We've just begun a road to new kinds of materials," says December.

Color, culture and chaos is the third in a series of four video stories on the Ford / BASF / Eastman collaboration to develop paint formulations that are at the vanguard of sustainability.

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