Project

High performance polymers based upon starch derived building blocks

Total utilization of agricultural biomass is mandatory in order to achieve a circular economy and ecosystem. This project will evaluate building blocks based upon starch and the application potential of the resulting thermoplastic polymeric products.

Renewable polymers

A more balanced and diverse portfolio of food and non-food products is important for the starch processing industry in order to increase its overall economic viability. One possible outlet for new non-food starch based products is the synthesis of bio-based building blocks from agricultural side streams, that can be used to synthesize high performance renewable biopolymers. Growing demand for these renewable biopolymers is a drive for green economy and sustainable future. Moreover, it creates opportunities for new, starch-based products with higher added value and therefore beneficially contributes to the overall economic viability of the agrifood sector.

Cooperation

In WFBR’s long-standing collaboration with Archer Daniels Midland (ADM), precompetitive technologies were developed in various projects, including projects co-funded by the Dutch Topsector AgriFood. In an earlier project , WFBR and ADM have developed generic technology for the production of high performance isoidide (a novel building block derived from starch) based polyesters. Owing to their high thermo-mechanical properties, isoidide polyesters showed a high potential to be used in applications beyond packaging.

Objective

The objective of this project is to synthesize a broader family of isoidide-containing polymers and obtain extensive scientific insights into their mechanical, gas barrier, fibre and film forming properties. In addition, their industrially relevant application potential in applications like (food) packaging and coatings, textile fibres and industrial coatings will be explored in collaboration with four industrial partners: ADM, Beckers Industrial Coatings, Holland Colours Apeldoorn and Refresco.