Metals that can take it: the “SRM” surface by Homapal

Homapal-0001-01-2021

Real metal decors are an absolute bonus with their mix of colour, surface, and feel – a combination that is virtually inimitable and creates unmistakable value in interior design. For the first time ever, a highly scratch-resistant matt surface with anti-fingerprint properties now gives planners and architects the opportunity to use real metal surfaces on horizontal surfaces that are subject to heavy wear without any hesitation: in trade fair and shop fittings, for tables and work surfaces in offices and in the contract sector, on counters and tables in bars, hotels and restaurants. Its name: “SRM – Scratch-Resistant Matt”.

Dr. Stefan Schmiedinghöfer, Director Research & Development in Nemho – Center of Expertise at the Homapal company headquarters in Herzberg, explains in a short interview how the innovation came about, what hurdles had to be overcome, and what makes the surface so special.

Dr. Schmiedinghöfer, from your point of view, what is so special about “SRM” from a technical point of view? What quality requirements have you set out for the new surface?

Finishing technology offers us the possibility to treat our decors in such a way that they have an anti-fingerprint effect. In addition, for the first time, it creates the conditions for surfaces of real metals to become so tough that they meet the requirements for horizontal use according to EN 438 (HGS) in terms of abrasion and scratch resistance. This means that “SRM” corresponds exactly to the optical, physical, and chemical quality requirements we have set out.

How long have you been working on the development of such a surface and what hurdles did you have to overcome in the development process?

Homapal has been working on tougher surfaces and the horizontal use of real metals ever since I can remember. So, our development concepts have been geared towards this for some time. The project started in early 2018. The first hurdles were caused by working with the very thin and flexible board materials and were followed by the challenge of bonding the protective layer to the initial laminate.

How does Homapal succeed in making a surface of this kind that meets its own stringent quality criteria? Are you working with new technology, or have you adapted a known process to suit your individual requirements?

We have adapted a well-known painting process to our special requirements in cooperation with a plant specialist. This has resulted in a customised production plant for Homapal.

The laminate producer Homapal is opening up new market segments with the “SRM – Scratch-Resistant Matt” surface. The company is focusing on the greatest possible design freedom with a combination of colours and decors when implementing holistic room concepts. In keeping with the spirit of the times, you will find “Scratch-Resistant Matt” on 22 selected metal decors, such as aluminium, copper, or brass in a range of different structures and colours, such as Taupe, Champagne, or Gold, but also on plain colours, such as Macchiato, Light Grey, Stone Grey, or White.

Homapal
Homapal GmbH, with approximately 90 employees, produces and sells laminates with special surfaces of real metal and magnetic boards at its facility in Herzberg, Germany. In the German-speaking region, the focus is on high quality decorative interior design. With its product range, this manufacturer is an appealing choice for trade fair, shop fitting and furniture builders. Homapal products are ideal for use in shops, hotels, doctors' surgeries, on cruise ships, in bars, restaurants and clubs - wherever surfaces are to be refined with elegant surfaces. Homapal is a part of the Formica group based in Cincinnati, USA, and owns exclusive sales and marketing rights for Formica products in Germany, Austria and Switzerland.