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Continental AG and INAM Open Applications for Sustainable Materials Solutions Challenge

(Berlin, 13 January 2021) INAM – the Innovation Network for Advanced Materials, on behalf of Continental AG, are organising an Open Innovation Challenge for Sustainable Materials Solutions.

Organizations use open innovation to access more diverse sources of ideas and talent. The goal is to find opportunities to solve unmet needs with the help of the right partnerships. INAM organises and hosts Open Innovation Challenges on behalf of their members as well as any interested parties who would like to expand the innovation potential of their organization.

This Open Innovation Challenge is based on Continental’s search for innovative material solutions for rubber and plastics for fluid lines in automotive applications.


Nowadays, more and more vehicle manufacturers are focusing on alternative drives to provide sustainable mobility solutions. The growing number of electric and hybrid vehicles increase the demands on components and materials. Therefore, lines and hoses are not only indispensable, but also represent a big potential. In hybrid or electric drives, fluid systems often made out of rubber, stainless steel or aluminum are increasingly being replaced by high-performance plastic materials. Plastic components reduce vehicle weight and thus contribute to lower fuel consumption and CO2 emissions - while improving performance.

Sustainable material solutions are part of Continentals comprehensive sustainability roadmap, which aims to achieve 100 percent carbon neutrality, 100 percent emission-free mobility and industry, a 100 percent circular economy and 100 percent responsible value chains – all by no later than 2050.

Therefore, this challenge is focussed on developing a solution for one of the following automotive applications:

  • Lines for air conditioning applications e.g. transporting refrigerant (CO2 or 1234yf)

  • Lines connected to the transmission or engine transporting Oil or fuel

  • Lines for heating and cooling applications e.g. transporting water glycol

  • Lines for the air induction of turbo charger applications e.g. transporting air

  • Lines for exhaust gas management (DPF/GPF)


The winning team(s) will be mentioned as inventor of the solution in Continental communication measures (e.g. Social Media Content, Website-Stories, Internal news, Press releases, etc.).

Additionally, the winning solution(s) will enter the market within the continental product portfolio.


The idea should focus on material based on rubber and plastic and include one/several of the following solutions:

  • Recyclable vulcanized elastomer hoses

  • Decomposition and preparation of elastomeric waste/scrap

  • Substitution of fluorinated polymers

  • CO2 neutral processes for carbon black or other raw materials

  • Bio-based reinforcement material


The challenge is open to university research groups, research centers, individual inventors or startups who have developed an innovative technology that could be used to address the described challenge.


Applications are open now until the end of February 2021. Finalists will be selected by March 22nd 2021 and their presentations will take place on the week of April 12th 2021. Finally, the winner(s) will be announce at the end of April.

To apply, head to the Challenge’s F6S page:


About Continental

Continental develops pioneering technologies and services for sustainable and connected mobility of people and their goods. Founded in 1871, the technology company offers safe, efficient, intelligent, and affordable solutions for vehicles, machines, traffic and transportation. In 2019, Continental generated sales of €44.5 billion and currently employs more than 233,000people in 59 countries and markets.

For more information visit:

About INAM

INAM, the Innovation Network for Advanced Materials, is a global network of companies and research institutes in the field of Advanced Materials. INAM’s goal is to enable the right connections and make technological innovations become reality by working closely with startups, SMEs, corporations and research institutes to start, grow and transform the development of Advanced Materials.

For more information visit:

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13 January 2021 Continental Challenge
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