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Issue 05/2016

  • Text
  • Bioplastics
  • Biobased
  • Products
  • Materials
  • Fibres
  • Plastics
  • Packaging
  • Renewable
  • Properties
  • Applications
bioplasticsMAGAZINE_1605_

Fibres & Textiles Wood

Fibres & Textiles Wood based fibres for industrial applications Cellulose, the most abundant polymer on this planet, plays a key role in the global fibre market Austria headquartered Lenzing AG developed a process to transform wood based precursor material into a fibre with multiple end-uses. Innovation has always played an important role in its corporate history. The invention of Lenzing Modal ® was followed by the development of a producer dyed color pigmented modal fibre with outstanding fastness properties. Many years of intense research resulted in afibre production process only using a physical cellulose dissolving mechanism known by its generic name Lyocell. Lenzing AG is selling Lyocell products under its brandname TENCEL ® . Historically used only for global apparel and home textiles its unique inherent properties for technical end-application as described hereafter. Lenzing Modal Color as an alternative for plastic nets: Lenzing fibre products are part of the natural cellulose cycle. Outstanding trait of them are, that they are from renewable sources and naturally compostable. The wood pulp used for man-made cellulosefibre products stems from sustainably managed sources. The origins of the forests and plantations and their methods of production are well known. Using sustainable packaging materials that are part of the cellulose cycle will dramatically reduce the global usage of crude oil derivate in this area. A market study showed the strong interest in such packaging material from the retail side. The Lenzing AG has together with partners developed sustainable nets for fruits and vegetables. This new packaging solution bears significantly positive environmental impact. Wood based cellulose nets are fully biodegradable, compostable, allowing it to reenter the food life cycle. Studies with regard to the rate of being compostable were carried out in carefully controlled environments. Wood based Lenzing fibres were found completely degraded after 6 weeks in a static aerated compost pile, whereas cotton fibre suffered a weight loss of approximately only 80 %. Under identical conditions, polyester (PET), polypropylene and polyethylene are not degradable at all. Upon these results big retailers have already decided to implement the concept of fruit and vegetable nets made of Lenzing Modal. Figure 1: Cellulose cycle Disposal Use Textiles and nonwovens products Photosynthesis Figure 2: Lenzing Modal Nets for packaging Trees Pulp Cellulose fiber production 18 bioplastics MAGAZINE [05/16] Vol. 11

Fibres & Textiles Tencel new solutions for the footwear industry The newest fibre generation developed by Lenzing AG is called Tencel. Fibers are obtained by only dissolving the cellulose in a solvent and spinning the fibre into a waterborne spinning bath. Nearly 100 % of the solvent used is recovered in the process. Contrary to other ways of cellulosic fibre manufacturing, this new technology of making fibre is based on a physical rather than a chemical process. This technology an example of ecological soundness, received the environmental award of the European Union. It makes Tencel - apart from its excellentfibre characteristics – even an alternative to synthetic fibres for a wide variety of applications. Recently introduced Tencel in footwear offers, in comparison to traditional materials, three remarkable benefits: • moisture management • performance improvement • sustainability Moisture management: Fabrics and nonwovens containing Tencel provide excellent moisture properties. An outstanding characteristic of Tencel is the ability to absorb and release moisture, which results in a long-lasting optimal foot climate. Tencel contributes to the reduction of odour causing bacteria within footwear components. An increased wearing comfort is guaranteed. Lenzing and a number of renowned partners are currently innovating footwear components like lining, inner lining, thermo-adhesive lining, paddings as well as insoles all focused on improved moisture management and requested technical performance. Along with media attention on topics like climate change, shortage of important natural resources, declining working conditions and the abundancy of potentially harmful substances, global demand for sustainable consumer products is growing. Lenzing AG is taking ownership and developed with its supply chain partners solutions for a number of textile footwear components. Meanwhile also laces, zippers and even sewing threads can be obtained from Tencel. Shoe manufacturers and designers can choose for a sustainable footwear parts portfolio offering enhanced moisture management opportunities without compromising performance and longevity of the product. period, no separation of the remaining plant and the twine is necessary. The residual biomass can be directly transferred to composting site, offering time saving and as well as cost reduction is an environmentally sustainable product. Outlook Cellulosic fibres manufactured according to the lyocell process have a great potential to substitute standard plastics and oil based synthetic fibres. Coming from renewable origin, Tencel can be returned into the natural cycle without restrictions. The claim: from nature to usage and back to nature is truly fulfilled. Currently Lenzing AG is evaluating additional promising applications where sustainability will meet demanding technical performance criteria like for carry bags, filters and even thermoplastic reinforcement and composite materials will be investigated. www.lenzing.com 5F30-07 Figure 3: Botanic shoe concept with Tencel Figure 4: Tencel twines for green-house By: Marina Crnoja-Cosic, Berndt Köll, Martin Marsche, Robert Malinowsky LENZING AG Lenzing, Austria Tencel Twines, the sustainable solution for growing fruits and vegetables Cellulose based Tencel is compostable and biodegradable, even in marine environment. Looking at the cellulose cycle, the usage of this fibre is equivalent to that, what is nowadays claimed as circular economy. Agro twines produced from Tencel, mainly for greenhouse use can be tailored to keep the required strength during the growth period of the plant, but being compostable after harvesting. With this unique feature it is possible to substitute plastic twines and wire twines. After harvesting bioplastics MAGAZINE [05/16] Vol. 11 19

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