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Dr Benedikt Hendan

Senior Product Specialist (SPS) for chemical and softlines testing

Dr Benedikt Hendan

Senior Product Specialist (SPS) for chemical and softlines testing

What is your current role?

I am responsible for supporting sales, laboratories and certification units with regard to chemical and softlines testing. Furthermore, I am a member of ISO, CEN and DIN committees for standardisation of chemical testing on textiles, leather and footwear, testing for microplastic from textile sources and for safety of children’s clothing. I am also a representative of TÜV SÜD in working groups of industrial associations

What is your academic/industrial background?

I studied chemistry and hold a Doctor of Natural Sciences degree in Chemistry from the University of Paderborn, Germany. I joined TÜV SÜD Product Service GmbH, Germany, in 2007. I worked in different positions and built up the chemistry and softlines lab in Frankfurt. In 2017, I moved to the Technical Competence Centre of the TÜV SÜD Product Service Division as an SPS.

What was the route of your interest in engineering?/Why did you choose to become an engineer?

I was already interested in chemistry as a boy. I found it exciting that colours change when you mix certain substances, and of course that it sometimes bangs and stinks. In my professional career, I was initially involved in the testing and development of building materials before moving on to TÜV SÜD, where I worked on the analysis of harmful substances in textiles and shoes as well as textile-physical testing.

What are your main areas of expertise?

My main focus is testing of harmful substances in Softlines and on the related legal regulations. Moreover, I am concerned with safety of children’s clothing and with sustainability topics such as microplastic.

What specific tasks and responsibilities does your job entail?

Providing trainings and information on new regulations and standards in my field of competency. Participating in standardisation committees and industry associations and thereby contributing to the development of standards. Reviewing and releasing of test programs and restricted substances lists (RSL).

What most excites/interests you about your role?

Permanent learning through international exchange with colleagues in our laboratories as well as with employees from other companies in standardisation committees

What exciting developments have you seen in the company since you started?

The way in which the increasing meaning of harmful substances for the safety of products is taken into account among others by the development of intelligent software solutions such as CDMS (chemical data management system)

What future trends do you see developing in your area of work?

The number of legally regulated substances will continue to increase in the coming years. Therefore, suitable solutions for smart testing have to be developed in order to meet the legal requirements but not to let the testing costs explode. Furthermore, sustainability issues are becoming increasingly important. For example, it must be ensured that recycled material meets the requirements for chemical safety for the consumer and environmental protection.

What is your biggest challenge?

The biggest challenge is to keep track of the increasing number of legal requirements for harmful substances in products.

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