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Issue 05/2018

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  • Bioplastics
  • Plastics
  • Biobased
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  • Biodegradable
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  • Sustainable
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Fibers & Textiles PHBV

Fibers & Textiles PHBV fibers Tianan Biopolymer (Beilun, Ningbo, China) has been devoted to developing PHBV fibre applications since 2010. And in 2013, The company invested to found a new company: Bioserica Fiber is the new company now focusing on producing PHBV fibres. After eight years of significant efforts, Bioserica fibres were successfully introduced. Bioserica fibres are produced from a specially developed PHBV/PLA compound which is 100 % biobased and biodegradable. It is in conformity with the environmentally friendly concepts: Green, Low-carbon, Sustainable development. Bioserica fibres pretty much resemble natural silk and very pleasant to the touch. Compared to pure PLA fibeers, Bioserica fibres are softer and they also show a better performance in dye-uptake. Bioserica fabrics proved to have the following features: They are soft and feel cool. They can be draped very well and show a high dye uptake and color fastness to rubbing. In addition they also show excellent anti-bacteria properties. It is also worth mentioning that this is the first time finding PHB oligomers to have effective broad-spectrum antibacterial and antifungal properties. Due to the outstanding characteristics of Bioserica fibres, there is a wide range of applications. The fibres and textiles can be used for healthcare and medical textiles, for wound dressing and surgical sutures as well as for antimicrobial finish and many applications more. MT Results: Tested Component: Off-White fabric from PLA / PHBV fabrics - 2 Result Percentage Reduction (%) Result Percentage Reduction (%) Staphylococcus aureus Klebsiella pneumoniae ≥ 99,99 ≥ 99,99 Candida albicans Trichophyton mentagrophytes ≥ 92,86 ≥ 99,99 *Test results of evaluating Bioserica fabrics’ anti-bacterial properties after being washing 50 times using AATCC Test Method 100-2012. The test report is issued by Bureau Veritas Hong Kong Limites. 26 bioplastics MAGAZINE [05/18] Vol. 13

Fibers & Textiles PHB-fibers for textiles Introducing a novel, biodegradable polyester fiber for the textile industry San Francisco Bay Area-based Mango Materials has developed a novel, fully biodegradable, biopolyester fiber that can be used widely in textile applications. Research is increasingly showing that plastic microparticles are present in virtually all aquatic environments, from oceans to our drinking water. Textiles have recently been identified as a potential culprit for many of these microparticles, as fibers are shed when textiles are washed. Estimates show that half a million tons of persistent microfibers are released into the ocean every year (1). Additionally, the textile industry is responsible for generating high volumes of waste; in 2016, only 17 % of clothing and other textile products was collected for recycling, with the rest disposed of in landfills or incinerators [2]. This, in combination with a push to move away from petroleum-based materials, has put increasing pressure on textile industries to find alternatives to synthetic, persistent petroleum-based fibers. “The fiber developed by Mango Materials is biodegradable and can solve the problem of persistent microparticles,” reports CEO Molly Morse. “We are incredibly excited to have developed a biopolyester formulation that can replace persistent synthetic materials in textiles. This innovative solution tackles the problem of textile waste and persistent plastic microfibers.” Mango Materials utilizes methane gas to produce polyhydroxyalkanoate (PHA) through bacterial fermentation and is currently focused on P3HB. In 2017 the company began focusing on fibers as a desirable application for its PHA. Mango Materials has developed a process to transform natural biopolymers into a resin that can be used to produce sustainable fibers for a variety of applications, including apparel, carpets, and other fibers. The company has completed extensive testing to show that its resin can be spun into fiber using conventional equipment and has worked closely with multiple facilities around the world specializing in fiber spinning to refine the formulation and processing conditions. Analysis has shown that the formulation can achieve the targeted melt strength and result in a fiber that has tenacity appropriate for a wide assortment of end-uses. “The textile is hydrophobic, so it wicks moisture,“ Molly said. “We’ve not tested it for odor retention but it is quickdrying.” Thus far, the textile industry has greeted news of the discovery with a lot of enthusiasm, she added. Preliminary studies demonstrated biodegradation in the San Francisco Bay in a matter of weeks, and respirometry studies done by the United States Department of Agriculture showed that the rate and extent of biodegradation in an aerobic compost environment was similar to that of cotton. The company is continuing to advance this exciting new technology; continue to watch for news on additional developments with Mango Materials’ fiber in late 2019. [1] Boucher, J., & Friot, D. (2017). Primary microplastics in the oceans: a global evaluation of sources. Gland, Switzerland: IUCN. [2] United States Environmental Protection Agency. (2016). Advancing Sustainable Materials Management: 2014 fact sheet. Washington DC. Info See a video-clip at: iB0i-D4wmZc By: Allison Pieja CTO, Mango Materials San Francisco Bay Area, California, USA bioplastics MAGAZINE [05/18] Vol. 13 27

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