Multifunctional Wall Covering is a very broad description of a patented innovation I have been working on together with dQconcepts B.V. from 2017 until its launch in 2020. Like the name says, it has multiple functions; it is printable, can be applied seamlessly and has acoustic properties. In this post I will tell you a bit more about the journey.
As usual, let’s start with a picture and description of the end product.
Multifunctional wall covering is a printable polyester wall covering material material that can be applied horizontally. It’s supplied in a roll that covers the wall from floor to ceiling in a single piece for walls up to 12 meters in length.
Apart from being seamless and printable, it has acoustic properties, meaning that it can improve and environments acoustics by eliminating echo. This is especially useful for open office environments that usually contain a lot of hard materials. Instead of investing in acoustic treatment, covering one or two walls with this material will drastically improve the acoustic climate of the office due to its large surface area - and at a competitive price and without sacrificing office space!
A full list of the material properties:
- Printable polyester wall covering
- Seamless application of up to 12m in one piece
- Acoustic properties (ISO 11654 αw value of 0,25(H))
- Can be applied to uneven walls with gaps up to 4mm
- Can be removed without damaging the wall
- Odorless due to water based printing technique
- Fire retardant (current classification: C-s1,d1)
For this project I was asked to participate by dQconcepts B.V., with whom I’ve worked in the past on Mixblocks - Musical building blocks on the iPhone and SAM: 100% recycled bird feeder. dQconcepts shared the idea for this project and together we’ve solved the main puzzle: finding the right combination of materials to create an end product that:
- has all the right properties (as listed above)
- complies with rules and regulations (EN 15102)
- can be mass produced
- can be printed using commonly available machinery in the market today
- can be applied by a single person
- can be sold at a competitive price
As you can imagine, this makes the project considerably more difficult than just buying off-the-shelf materials. Unfortunately I cannot share any technical details about how we have managed to solve this puzzle due to the competitive position of the product.
Parallel to the sourcing the materials and exploring methods to produce the wall covering, dQconcepts B.V. has started a patent application and the product has been patented in multiple geographic regions, including the European Union and USA.
This project is patented innovative material, but we do not intend to start a printing business. The first licensed vendor and producer of the base material is Dutch company Probo B.V. They sell the Multifunctional Wall Covering to their resellers under the name MultiTexPro®. Check out their website if you’re interested!
- Product development: from first test to final material
- Prototyping: from manufacturing material by hand to initial testing on existing production machines
- Product strategy: continuous involvement
- Image courtesy: all images by Probo