Barrier Syntech, part of the Barrier Group, is establishing a new fireproofing and composite research facility at is base in North East England.
The Wallsend-based company manufactures Thermal Jackets and Fire Protection Jackets, which are used to thermally insulate and fireproof pipework and ductwork in the oil & gas and petrochemical markets.
The new research operation will focus on the development of composites used in the production of new jacket innovations, used to protect offshore equipment. These materials are light and are not impacted by sea water corrosion, maintaining their integrity and optimum fire proofing standards.
The new facility will test composites, which are fire resistant to the Jet Fire standard requirement, J120, to ensures the jackets can withstand contact with fire for a prolonged period.
Barrier Syntech’s new facility will be led by mechanical design and product development engineer, Pietro di Modica. With degrees in Mechanical System Engineering from Newcastle University and Mechanical Engineering from the University of Palermo, Pietro has previously worked for Imat in Italy.
He has undertaken a range of research projects applicable to his new role at Barrier Syntech including Modelling Fire Behaviour of Composite Materials and has been involved in fire testing materials for light aircraft.
Pietro di Modia said: “Safety and operational efficiency are paramount priorities for the offshore sector and through the new research and product development facility at Barrier Syntech we will focus on enhancing Fire Proof Jackets available to the industry.
“I am looking forward to further developing the relationship between my academic research experience with practical commercial applications that will be an advantage to Barrier Syntech and the wider offshore industry.”
Robert Bowles, Chairman of Barrier Group, said: “The creation of our new fireproofing facility is an important development for the Barrier Group. It will enable Barrier Syntech to remain at the forefront of developments in the offshore industry and support our manufacturing operations with advanced and effective products.
“Pietro’s expertise in the research and development of fire-proof composites will be a real benefit to Barrier Syntech and supports industry ambitions to apply technology-led solutions that improve safety and efficiency.”