ecosphere researcher nominated for "Deutscher Zukunftspreis"



From the laboratory in Azendorf, Franconia, to the big stage in Berlin: the research team behind the sprayable insulation technology "ecosphere" has been nominated for the Deutscher Zukunftspreis 2020.


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The maxit Group - known throughout the industry as a hotbed of innovation not only since the "Mörtelpad" - can be pleased about the nomination of its head of research Friedbert Scharfe: The 67-year-old graduate engineer was significantly involved in the development of the spray-on façade insulation based on micro hollow glass spheres - as were Prof. Dr. Thorsten Gerdes (55) from the University of Bayreuth and Dr. Klaus Hintzer (66) from the company Dyneon (3M). "The development of ecosphere makes a real contribution to climate protection and incidentally solves many problems of previous insulation systems for façades. We consider the nomination a great honour and see it as public recognition of our joint research work," says Scharfe. Federal President Frank-Walter Steinmeier personally awards the prize, which stands for technology and innovation "made in Germany": Outstanding technical, engineering or scientific innovations as well as those from the IT sector are honoured in the national performance­comparison. The award ceremony will take place on 25 November and will be broadcast on ZDF.



At the world's leading trade fair "BAU 2019" in Munich, maxit presented its new "ecosphere" insulation technology to the trade public for the first time. This is a purely mineral and particularly resource-saving building material whose insulating effect is based on microscopically small, partially vacuumed hollow glass spheres. These can be produced from various types of sand and thus counteract the global shortage of building sand. The non-combustible (A1) mortar-based insulating material can be easily applied by plastering machine to any substrate - inside or outside. The material can be sprayed directly from the building material silo and is therefore not only completely jointless, but also easy to work with. With a thermal conductivity value of 0.04 W/(mK) in the dry mass, ecosphere has since been convincing as an ecological and affordable alternative to conventional insulation materials.

On 9 September, the Office of the Federal President announced this year's nominees for the Deutscher Zukunftspreis 2020. The Federal President himself presents the award, which stands for outstanding technology and innovation "made in Germany". The Deutscher Zukunftspreis has been awarded annually since 1997.

Trendsetting technology: The development of the sprayable insulation "ecosphere" has now surprisingly earned the research team led by maxit's head of development Friedbert Scharfe (centre) a nomination for the Deutscher Zukunftspreis. Photo: Deutscher Zukunftspreis | A. Pudenz



Hollow glass microspheres make it possible: the resource-saving "ecosphere" insulation can be easily sprayed onto the wall using a plastering machine. This development from the maxit think tank is now attracting special attention outside the construction industry. Photo: maxit



For further information, please contact:


maxit Group |
Franken Maxit Mauermörtel GmbH & Co.


Azendorf 63
D-95359 Kasendorf

Coordination and press contact:
Reinhard Tyrok
Head of Marketing
Phone: +49(0)9220 18185
Mobile: +49(0)173 5760 325

Spokesman of the research team:
Friedbert Scharfe
Head of R & D
Phone: +49(0)9220 18135
Mobile: +49(0)173 5760 207



3M Deutschland GmbH


Carl-Schurz-Str. 1
D-41453 Neuss
Phone: +49(0)2131 14-0

Press contact 3M:
Sabine Karsch
Head of Communication and
Public Relations Central Europe
Mobile: +49(0)170 7233376

Scientific contact person 3M:
Dr. rer.nat. Klaus Hintzer
Corporate Scientist
Industrieparkstr. 1
D-84508 Burgkirchen
Phone: +49(0)8679-74666



University of Bayreuth


Universitätsstraße 30
D-95447 Bayreuth

Coordination and press contact:
Anja-Maria Meister
Press spokeswoman
Phone: +49(0)921 55 5300
Mobile: +49(0)151 12133220

Scientific contact person:
Prof. Dr.-Ing. Thorsten Gerdes
Head of Keylab Glass Technology
Prof.-Rüdiger-Bormann-Str. 1
D-95447 Bayreuth
Phone: +49(0)921 55 6504