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issue 02/2021

  • Text
  • Balance
  • Moulding
  • Carbon
  • Recycling
  • Plastics
  • Sustainable
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  • Renewable
  • Biobased
  • Packaging
  • Materials
  • Bioplastics
Highlights: Injection Moulding Basics: Mass Balance

Sweetwoods delivers

Sweetwoods delivers first tonnes of high purity lignin and wood sugars Materials The Bio-Based Industries Joint Undertaking (BBI JU) funded Sweetwoods wood valorisation flagship is now ready to ship out industrially representative samples of high purity near-native lignin and wood sugars at the tonne scale. The project’s leading partner Graanul Biotech (Tallinn, Estonia) has stated that the first phase of construction works of the flagship was finished in 2020 and that the construction of the second phase, where hydrolysis, separation processes, and lignin drying will be established, has started. Graanul Biotech estimates that an industrial supply of novel lignin and sugars will be available in the last quarter of 2022. The Sweetwoods novel fractionation demo plant uses sustainable hardwood biomass to demonstrate, on an industrial scale, how novel pre-treatment technology in combination with innovative enzymatic solutions can provide high-quality lignin and wood sugars. This unique technology converts over 90 % of hardwood into usable high-quality feedstocks for biomaterials and biochemicals and enables establishing novel biobased value chains with a low ecological footprint. “The whole fractionation process still needs to be challenged within 24/7 operation at scale, but preliminary performance tests have had very promising results yielding expected high-purity lignin and sugars. This means that we have created a strong basis for near term realisation of supply of sustainable feedstocks for different biomaterials and biochemicals productions to create industry-changing new value chains, where wood as sustainable raw material plays a vital role,” said Graanul Biotech’s R&D Manager Peep Pitk. High purity lignin and wood sugars in evaluation One of the goals of the Sweetwoods project is to establish markets for lignin and sugar-based platform chemicals. The consortium partner Tecnaro (Ilsfeld, Germany) which develops and produces thermoplastic compounds, composites, and blends, confirms that high-purity lignin from the Sweetwoods project can be used as a substitute for conventional lignin in biocomposite production, offering improved product quality without odour. “These first tests show positive results that novel high purity lignin will allow Tecnaro to enter higher value markets and gain competitive advantage through both sustainability and performance,” said Michael Schweizer from Tecnaro. The Tecnaro product family includes Arboform ® , which is made from 100 % renewable raw materials and is biodegradable. Sweetwoods consortium member Recticel (Brussels, Belgium) is currently evaluating on lab-scale which (depolymerised) lignin types are most suitable for incorporation in rigid foam for insulation boards. The most suitable candidates will be further upscaled and screened on a semi-industrial scale. Another consortium partner Global Bioenergies (Évry, France) has successfully scaled up the production of bioisobutene from residual wood derived sugars at the tonne scale. The company is also progressing very well towards the commercialisation of renewable cosmetics with the first EU registration of a key cosmetic-grade ingredient derived from fermentative isobutene. An important part of the Sweetwoods project is to evaluate the environmental and socio-economic performance of the Sweetwoods plant, feedstock, and developed products. Consortium member 2B (Rome, Italy) has been working on the Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) of the whole wood fractionation process to calculate the environmental impact of the outputs of this process: sugar concentrates and lignin. The LCA has allowed the identification of the environmental hotspots of the fractionation process, which are useful from an ecodesign perspective. The LCA results are currently being compared with other biorefining processes and products to get a numeric estimate of the environmental benefits of the Sweetwoods flagship technology. This Sweetwoods project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No. 792061. AT . Info See a video-clip at: asRGF4PSsxE 30 bioplastics MAGAZINE [02/21] Vol. 16

New Edition 2020 Materials 120 pages full colour, paperback ISBN 978-3- 9814981-4-1: Bioplastics 3rd updated edition 2020 ISBN 978-3- 9814981-3-4: Biokunststoffe 3. überarbeitete Auflage 2020 Materials ‘Basics‘ book on bioplastics New Edition 2020 This book, created and published by Polymedia Publisher, maker of bioplastics MAGAZINE is available in English and German (now available in the third, revised edition). Chinese and Polish editions are coming soon. The book is intended to offer a rapid and uncomplicated introduction into the subject of bioplastics. It is aimed at all interested readers, in particular those who have not yet had the opportunity to dig deeply into the subject, such as students or those just joining this industry, and lay readers. It gives an introduction to plastics and bioplastics, explains which renewable resources can be used to produce bioplastics, what types of bioplastic exist, and which ones are already on the market. Further aspects, such as market development, the agricultural land required, and waste disposal, are also examined. An extensive index allows the reader to find specific aspects quickly and is complemented by a comprehensive literature list and a guide to sources of additional information online. The author Dr. Michael Thielen is editor in chief and publisher bioplastics MAGAZINE. He is a qualified machinery design engineer with a degree in plastics technology from the RWTH University in Aachen. He has written several books on the subject of blow-moulding technology and bioplastics, and disseminated his knowledge of plastics in numerous presentations, seminars, guest lectures, and teaching assignments. Order now for € 18,69 (+ VAT where applicable, plus shipping and handling, ask for details) order at, by phone +49 2161 6884463 or by e-mail Or subscribe and get it as a free gift (see page 61 for details) New (3 rd , updated) edition is being printed now € 18.69 now available bioplastics MAGAZINE [02/21] Vol. 16 31

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