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Basics Glossary 2.0 In

Basics Glossary 2.0 In bioplastics MAGAZINE again and again the same expressions appear that some of our readers might (not yet) be familiar with. This glossary shall help with these terms and shall help avoid repeated explanations Bioplastics (as defined by European Bioplastics e.V.) is a term used to define two different kinds of plastics: a. Plastics based on renewable resources (the focus is the origin of the raw material used) b. → Biodegradable and compostable plastics according to EN13432 or similar standards (the focus is the compostability of the final product; biodegradable and compostable plastics can be based on renewable (biobased) and/or non-renewable (fossil) resources). Bioplastics may be - based on renewable resources and biodegradable; - based on renewable resources but not be biodegradable; and - based on fossil resources and biodegradable. Aerobic - anaerobic | aerobic = in the presence of oxygen (e.g. in composting) | anaerobic = without oxygen being present (e.g. in biogasification, anaerobic digestion) [bM 06/09] Amorphous | non-crystalline, glassy with unordered lattice Amylopectin | Polymeric branched starch molecule with very high molecular weight (biopolymer, monomer is → Glucose) [bM 05/09] Amylose | Polymeric non-branched starch molecule with high molecular weight (biopolymer, monomer is → Glucose) [bM 05/09] Biodegradable Plastics | Biodegradable Plastics are plastics that are completely assimilated by the → microorganisms present a defined environment as food for their energy. The carbon of the plastic must completely be converted into CO 2 during the microbial process. For an official definition, please refer to the standards e.g. ISO or in Europe: EN 14995 Plastics- Evaluation of compostability - Test scheme and specifications. [bM 02/06, bM 01/07] Blend | Mixture of plastics, polymer alloy of at least two microscopically dispersed and molecularly distributed base polymers. Bisphenol-A (BPA) | Monomer used to produce different polymers. BPA is said to cause health problems, due to the fact that is behaves like a hormone. Therefore it is banned for use in children’s products in many countries. updated such as ‘PLA (Polylactide)‘ in various articles. Readers who would like to suggest better or other explanations to be added to the list, please contact the editor. [*: bM ... refers to more comprehensive article previously published in bioplastics MAGAZINE) BPI | Biodegradable Products Institute, a notfor-profit association. Through their innovative compostable label program, BPI educates manufacturers, legislators and consumers about the importance of scientifically based standards for compostable materials which biodegrade in large composting facilities. Carbon neutral | Carbon neutral describes a product or process that has a negligible impact on total atmospheric CO 2 levels. For example, carbon neutrality means that any CO 2 released when a plant decomposes or is burnt is offset by an equal amount of CO 2 absorbed by the plant through photosynthesis when it is growing. Catalyst | substance that enables and accelerates a chemical reaction Cellophane | Clear film on the basis of → cellulose. Cellulose | Polymeric molecule with very high molecular weight (biopolymer, monomer is → Glucose), industrial production from wood or cotton, to manufacture paper, plastics and fibres. CEN | Comité Européen de Normalisation (European organisation for standardization) Compost | A soil conditioning material of decomposing organic matter which provides nutrients and enhances soil structure. [bM 06/08, 02/09] Compostable Plastics | Plastics that are biodegradable under ‘composting’ conditions: specified humidity, temperature, → microorganisms and timefame. Several national and international standards exist for clearer definitions, for example EN 14995 Plastics - Evaluation of compostability - Test scheme and specifications. [bM 02/06, bM 01/07] Composting | A solid waste management technique that uses natural process to convert organic materials to CO 2 , water and humus through the action of → microorganisms. When talking about composting of bioplastics, usually industrial composting in a managed composting plant is meant [bM 03/07] Compound | plastic mixture from different raw materials (polymer and additives) [bM 04/10) Copolymer | Plastic composed of different monomers. Cradle-to-Gate | Describes the system boundaries of an environmental →Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) which covers all activities from the ‘cradle’ (i.e., the extraction of raw materials, agricultural activities and forestry) up to the factory gate Cradle-to-Cradle | (sometimes abbreviated as C2C): Is an expression which communicates the concept of a closed-cycle economy, in which waste is used as raw material (‘waste equals food’). Cradle-to-Cradle is not a term that is typically used in →LCA studies. Cradle-to-Grave | Describes the system boundaries of a full →Life Cycle Assessment from manufacture (‘cradle’) to use phase and disposal phase (‘grave’). Crystalline | Plastic with regularly arranged molecules in a lattice structure Density | Quotient from mass and volume of a material, also referred to as specific weight DIN | Deutsches Institut für Normung (German organisation for standardization) DIN-CERTCO | independant certifying organisation for the assessment on the conformity of bioplastics Dispersing | fine distribution of non-miscible liquids into a homogeneous, stable mixture Elastomers | rigid, but under force flexible and elastically formable plastics with rubbery properties EN 13432 | European standard for the assessment of the → compostability of plastic packaging products Energy recovery | recovery and exploitation of the energy potential in (plastic) waste for the production of electricity or heat in waste incineration pants (waste-to-energy) Enzymes | proteins that catalyze chemical reactions Ethylen | colour- and odourless gas, made e.g. from, Naphtha (petroleum) by cracking, monomer of the polymer polyethylene (PE) European Bioplastics e.V. | The industry association representing the interests of Europe’s thriving bioplastics’ industry. Founded in Germany in 1993 as IBAW, European Bioplastics today represents the interests of over 70 member companies throughout the European Union. With members from the agricultural feedstock, chemical and plastics industries, as well as industrial users and recycling companies, European Bioplastics serves as both a contact platform and catalyst for advancing the aims of the growing bioplastics industry. Extrusion | process used to create plastic profiles (or sheet) of a fixed cross-section consisting of mixing, melting, homogenising and shaping of the plastic. Fermentation | Biochemical reactions controlled by → microorganisms or enyzmes (e.g. the transformation of sugar into lactic acid). FSC | Forest Stewardship Council. FSC is an independent, non-governmental, not-forprofit organization established to promote the responsible and sustainable management of the world’s forests. Gelatine | Translucent brittle solid substance, colorless or slightly yellow, nearly tasteless and odorless, extracted from the collagen inside animals‘ connective tissue. 50 bioplastics MAGAZINE [05/11] Vol. 6

Basics Glucose | Monosaccharide (or simple sugar). G. is the most important carbohydrate (sugar) in biology. G. is formed by photosynthesis or hydrolyse of many carbohydrates e. g. starch. Granulate, granules | small plastic particles (3-4 millimetres), a form in which plastic is sold and fed into machines, easy to handle and dose. Humus | In agriculture, ‘humus’ is often used simply to mean mature → compost, or natural compost extracted from a forest or other spontaneous source for use to amend soil. Hydrophilic | Property: ‘water-friendly’, soluble in water or other polar solvents (e.g. used in conjunction with a plastic which is not water resistant and weather proof or that absorbs water such as Polyamide (PA). Hydrophobic | Property: ‘water-resistant’, not soluble in water (e.g. a plastic which is water resistant and weather proof, or that does not absorb any water such as Polyethylene (PE) or Polypropylene (PP). IBAW | → European Bioplastics Integral Foam | foam with a compact skin and porous core and a transition zone in between. ISO | International Organization for Standardization JBPA | Japan Bioplastics Association LCA | Life Cycle Assessment (sometimes also referred to as life cycle analysis, ecobalance, and → cradle-to-grave analysis) is the investigation and valuation of the environmental impacts of a given product or service caused. [bM 01/09] Microorganism | Living organisms of microscopic size, such as bacteria, funghi or yeast. Molecule | group of at least two atoms held together by covalent chemical bonds. Monomer | molecules that are linked by polymerization to form chains of molecules and then plastics Mulch film | Foil to cover bottom of farmland PBS | Polybutylene succinate, a 100% biodegradable polymer, made from (e.g. bio-BDO) and succinic acid, which can also be produced biobased. PC | Polycarbonate, thermoplastic polyester, petroleum based, used for e.g. baby bottles or CDs. Criticized for its BPA (→ Bisphenol-A) content. PCL | Polycaprolactone, a synthetic (fossil based), biodegradable bioplastic, e.g. used as a blend component. PE | Polyethylene, thermoplastic polymerised from ethylene. Can be made from renewable resources (sugar cane via bio-ethanol) [bM 05/10] PET | Polyethylenterephthalate, transparent polyester used for bottles and film PGA | Polyglycolic acid or Polyglycolide is a biodegradable, thermoplastic polymer and the simplest linear, aliphatic polyester. Besides ist use in the biomedical field, PGA has been introduced as a barrier resin [bM 03/09] PHA | Polyhydroxyalkanoates are linear polyesters produced in nature by bacterial fermentation of sugar or lipids. The most common type of PHA is → PHB. PHB | Polyhydroxybutyrate (better poly-3-hydroxybutyrate), is a polyhydroxyalkanoate (PHA), a polymer belonging to the polyesters class. PHB is produced by micro-organisms apparently in response to conditions of physiological stress. The polymer is primarily a product of carbon assimilation (from glucose or starch) and is employed by micro-organisms as a form of energy storage molecule to be metabolized when other common energy sources are not available. PHB has properties similar to those of PP, however it is stiffer and more brittle. PHBH | Polyhydroxy butyrate hexanoate (better poly 3-hydroxybutyrate-co-3-hydroxyhexanoate) is a polyhydroxyalkanoate (PHA), Like other biopolymers from the family of the polyhydroxyalkanoates PHBH is produced by microorganisms in the fermentation process, where it is accumulated in the microorganism’s body for nutrition. The main features of PHBH are its excellent biodegradability, combined with a high degree of hydrolysis and heat stability. [bM 03/09, 01/10, 03/11] PLA | Polylactide or Polylactic Acid (PLA) is a biodegradable, thermoplastic, linear aliphatic polyester from lactic acid. Lactic acid is made from dextrose by fermentation. Bacterial fermentation is used to produce lactic acid from corn starch, cane sugar or other sources. However, lactic acid cannot be directly polymerized to a useful product, because each polymerization reaction generates one molecule of water, the presence of which degrades the forming polymer chain to the point that only very low molecular weights are observed. Instead, lactic acid is oligomerized and then catalytically dimerized to make the cyclic lactide monomer. Although dimerization also generates water, it can be separated prior to polymerization. PLA of high molecular weight is produced from the lactide monomer by ring-opening polymerization using a catalyst. This mechanism does not generate additional water, and hence, a wide range of molecular weights are accessible. [bM 01/09] Plastics | Materials with large molecular chains of natural or fossil raw materials, produced by chemical or biochemical reactions. Renewable Resources | agricultural raw materials, which are not used as food or feed, but as raw material for industrial products or to generate energy Saccharins or carbohydrates | Saccharins or carbohydrates are name for the sugar-family. Saccharins are monomer or polymer sugar units. For example, there are known mono-, di- and polysaccharose. → glucose is a monosaccarin. They are important for the diet and produced biology in plants. Semi-finished products | plastic in form of sheet, film, rods or the like to be further processed into finshed products Sorbitol | Sugar alcohol, obtained by reduction of glucose changing the aldehyde group to an additional hydroxyl group. S. is used as a plasticiser for bioplastics based on starch. Starch | Natural polymer (carbohydrate) consisting of → amylose and → amylopectin, gained from maize, potatoes, wheat, tapioca etc. When glucose is connected to polymerchains in definite way the result (product) is called starch. Each molecule is based on 300 -12000-glucose units. Depending on the connection, there are two types → amylose and → amylopectin known. [bM 05/09] Starch derivate | Starch derivates are based on the chemical structure of → starch. The chemical structure can be changed by introducing new functional groups without changing the → starch polymer. The product has different chemical qualities. Mostly the hydrophilic character is not the same. Starch-ester | One characteristic of every starch-chain is a free hydroxyl group. When every hydroxyl group is connect with ethan acid one product is starch-ester with different chemical properties. Starch propionate and starch butyrate | Starch propionate and starch butyrate can be synthesised by treating the → starch with propane or butanic acid. The product structure is still based on → starch. Every based → glucose fragment is connected with a propionate or butyrate ester group. The product is more hydrophobic than → starch. Sustainable | An attempt to provide the best outcomes for the human and natural environments both now and into the indefinite future. One of the most often cited definitions of sustainability is the one created by the Brundtland Commission, led by the former Norwegian Prime Minister Gro Harlem Brundtland. The Brundtland Commission defined sustainable development as development that ‘meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.’ Sustainability relates to the continuity of economic, social, institutional and environmental aspects of human society, as well as the non-human environment). Sustainability | (as defined by European Bioplastics e.V.) has three dimensions: economic, social and environmental. This has been known as “the triple bottom line of sustainability”. This means that sustainable development involves the simultaneous pursuit of economic prosperity, environmental protection and social equity. In other words, businesses have to expand their responsibility to include these environmental and social dimensions. Sustainability is about making products useful to markets and, at the same time, having societal benefits and lower environmental impact than the alternatives currently available. It also implies a commitment to continuous improvement that should result in a further reduction of the environmental footprint of today’s products, processes and raw materials used. Thermoplastics | Plastics which soften or melt when heated and solidify when cooled (solid at room temperature). Thermoplastic Starch | (TPS) → starch that was modified (cooked, complexed) to make it a plastic resin Thermoset | Plastics (resins) which do not soften or melt when heated. Examples are epoxy resins or unsaturated polyester resins. WPC | Wood Plastic Composite. Composite materials made of wood fiber/flour and plastics (mostly polypropylene). Yard Waste | Grass clippings, leaves, trimmings, garden residue. bioplastics MAGAZINE [05/11] Vol. 6 51

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