Fold project launched in January 2022

VTT launched the Fold project in collaboration with Aalto University in a kick-off meeting in January 2022. The Fold consortium and research team met for the first time to discuss the goals of the project. The Fold project attracted companies from various fields: material producers, machine production and package convertion as well as brand owners from cosmetics, acoustics products and abrasives. This resulted in a highly multidisciplinary representation of business and commercial opportunities.

After the project was launched Fold was presented in press releases by Business Finland and Aalto University:

Business Finland: Fold goes for gold: New sustainable, durable packaging materials are taking off.

Aalto University: Multidisciplinary research project based on origami seeks solutions for industrial needs

Later in the spring Fold project joined ExpandFibre ecosystem, an R&D collaboration for groundbreaking bio-product innovations, formed by Fortum and Metsä Group.

ExpandFibre: Multidisciplinary FOLD co-innovation project seeks durable future solutions for industrial needs.

Demo samples presentation day in May

From the beginning of the project, the research team started to test materials and make demos to understand what type of structures would be technically feasible for different kind of applications. The first demos were showcased during “Fold Demo Day”, which gathered consortium partners and Fold research team to observe and discuss the demos.

As the event participants included experts from various different fields, the research team was able to gather a wide array of new application ideas for the folded materials and discovered new opportunities to develop the structures further.

Workshop by Paul Jackson in October

Several members of the consortium and the Fold research team attended a workshop by origami artist Paul Jackson. The workshop was arranged by Aalto University, and was focused on flexible folded surfaces. The workshop helped the project members to understand the basic principles of foldable patterns and techniques, and five full days of folding exercises resulted to a lot of new ideas regarding the possibilities of folding for different applications.

Fold presented in Uusi puu exhibitions starting from November

Uusi puu is a community gathering together operators working with wood-based bioproducts. Fold project had the opportunity to participate to exhibitions arranged by Uusi puu, with a folded concept for e-commerce packaging. The exhibitions were presented in various locations including the Finnish parliament and FinnCERES and UNITE event at the European Union in Brussels, Belgium.

The exhibited pieces consisted of three different solutions using the same foldable pattern: a protective layer for glass bottles, a folded e-commerce packaging solution for cosmetics, and a folded cover for ceramic bowls. The idea was to show how functional the structures can be for various different applications in the e-com sector. See more: Folded protection – Uusi puu -hanke

Exhibition pieces gained media attention from several outlets:

Uudet puupohjaiset tuotteet kisaavat Uusi puu 2023 -kilpailussa – ePressi

Suomalaiskeksintö voi pian muuttaa arkea lentokentillä – ”Tästä tulee uusi kuplamuovi” –

Flagships’ Brussels expedition – Enhancing dialogue between researchers and policymakers (