Biodegradable Resins Made from 100% Nature Raw Materials (Non-petroleum) with High Resin Property
Green Science Alliance Co., Ltd. can provide effective solutions for environmental pollution caused by plastic wastes. We have various type of biodegradable resin manufactured from ‘100% nature’ raw materials and biomass.
This practical resin is called ‘Nano Sakura’ which consists mainly of biodegradable cellulose and/or starch, and/or PLA (polylactic acid). In addition, these biodegradable materials can properly be compounded with nano fibrillated cellulose (hereinafter called nano cellulose) and/or biomass wastes. On top of that, nature based additive is also effective and important to improve resin property such as strength and moulding property.
Fig. 1 Basic concept of the biodegradable resins developed by Green Science Alliance Co., Ltd.
The following biodegradable resin represents typical composition. Fig. 2 illustrates images related to the resins mentioned below.
- Cellulose based biodegradable resin
- Starch based biodegradable resin
- Cellulose and/or starch, and/or PLA based biodegradable resin combined with nano cellulose.
- Cellulose, starch, and/or PLA based biodegradable resin combined with biomass wastes such as waste wood, bamboo, paper, etc.
Fig. 2 Images of typical biodegradable resin
- Molded products made of the biodegradable resins mentioned above.
Fig. 3 Images of biodegradable resin (molded products)
If further information is necessary, please refer to the following website of explanation about Nano Sakura.
Major Features and Advantages
Most significant feature is that Nano Sakura consists of 100% nature raw material and biomass resources. No chemical substance derived from petroleum and gas is used.
- Starch based biodegradable resin. Starch is widely available in developing countries.
- Cellulose based biodegradable resin. Cellulose is non-edible biomass.
- Biodegradable resin composite material combined with nanocellulose which can increase mechanical strength, biodegradability, foaming property, molded property, crystallinity, heat durability etc.
- Biodegradable resin combined with various types of biomass wastes such as waste wood, paper, bamboo, etc. It can save resin cost and utilize biomass wastes efficiently.
- Molded products consisting of 100% nature biodegradable resin can be manufactured with normal procedure and our material, in the industrial mass production level.
Fig. 4 Forming process of Nano Sakura
- Replace petroleum-based plastic material and products.
- Utilize local biomass waste such as waste wood, wastepaper, starch etc.
- Prevent from plastic pollution on land and in the ocean.
- Technology is roughly all established so that they can apply general injection molding machine, film machine, blow molding machine etc. with normal procedure. Normal extrusion machine can be utilized for biodegradable resin pellets production too.
Table 1. Comparison of biodegradable resin with competitors
- Other competitor’s biodegradable resin is made of petroleum or partly petroleum. Our resin is made of 100% nature biomass and no petroleum is used.
- By making composite with nano cellulose, molding property can be improved as well as biodegradability, mechanical strength, foaming properties etc.
- Biodegradable molded products are normally made of petroleum or partly biomass materials. Despite our resins consist of 100% nature raw material, people can manufacture molded products with conventional machines and procedure with our resin in mass production level, because of the improved molding property.
- Some of biomass wastes cost money to discard or dispose. We utilize various type of biomass waste resources such as waste wood, paper, bamboo, rice husk, coconut shell, bagasse, cassava, sugarcane leaf, starch etc. By doing this procedure, we can reduce discard cost and resin cost, and also recycle these types of biomass resources efficiently.
- Some biodegradable resins can be made of 100% nature material; PLA and starch based biodegradable resin. However, they derive from foodstuffs such as corns, sugar canes, potatoes etc. and it might be a problem when food shortage occurs in the future due to population explosion. However, one of our biodegradable resin can be made from cellulose, non-edible biomass. Not to mention this cellulose-based biodegradable resin does not derive from petrochemical, but 100% nature raw material.
- We make resin material, nano cellulose, composite material as resin pellets and molded products all by ourselves. So that our technology and knowledge have become better than other companies.
- By making composite with nano cellulose, mechanical strength of biodegradable resin becomes stronger. For example, tensile strength of starch based biodegradable resin is approximately 8 MPa. When about 23% of nano cellulose is mixed to make composite, tensile strength becomes approximately 20 MPa. In addition, bending strength, elasticity increases. In contrast, MFR and impact strength decreases which needs to be improved with further challenge and research.
Table 2. Introduction of CNF (nano cellulose fiber) to biodegradable resin
- For cutlery manufacturing as example, with just PLA, people can manufacture PLA molded products less than 100 pieces per day. However, with our PLA + nano cellulose based biodegradable resin, they can manufacture over several thousand per day due to the improved molding property.
Fig. 5 Increase of production capacity by nano cellulose
- Compared to PLA itself, by making PLA + nano cellulose composite, biodegradability increases more than twice in the measurement time over a month.
Fig. 6 Increase of biodegradability by nano cellulose
- By mixing concentration of 1-2 % of nano cellulose with PLA, foaming property increases. Foam (gas bubble) size of 30-80 μm were observed with only PLA. With 1-2 % of nano cellulose, foam size became approximately 10μm and moreover, distributed uniformly in the resin. Bubble can be observed where nano cellulose trace can be seen. This means nano cellulose may have functioned as foam nucleating agent.
Fig. 7 Images of gas bubbles generated in resin
Technical maturity / Past record of introduction
From 2017, we have been selling our biodegradable resin products mainly as pellets form. We have sold more than several hundred kilograms in total, to over 70 customers in Japan and to many countries including Thailand, Vietnam, Philippines, India, China, Spain, Netherland, France, USA. We have been selling mainly as samples to several ~ dozens of kilograms to each country. Sold products are mainly PLA and starch based biodegradable resins composite with nano cellulose and biomass waste. Cellulose based biodegradable resin is made very recently although we start supplying this material too recently.
We started to obtain more repeat orders and order quantity. These are increasing every month.
We also started to sell several pieces of molded products (spoons, forks, knifes, plates, cups etc.) in 2020, which have been strongly demanded.
Information on patent related to this technology
5 patents have been applied in Japan.
Dr. Ryohei MORI
Green Science Alliance Co., Ltd.