Bioplastics in the Automotive Market

The recent high cost of petro-based feedstock and polymers coupled with advances in new technologies like biotechnology, nanotechnology, green chemistry and material science have set the pace rolling for the revival of bio-based materials.Now, automotive companies are making a major effort to reintroduce plant-based plastics as a way of reducing their reliance on foreign oil and improving their environmental footprint.

Lightweighting’ is a hot topic for the automotive industry and the main reason why plastics have continuously been used to substitute heavier materials such as metals. Beyond the benefits of reduced weight, the future lies in choosing the most resource efficient plastics, i.e. bioplastics. Besides these evident advantages, e.g. biobased performance polymers (biobased polyesters/biobased polyamides) feature all the performance criteria important to high quality car components.

Prominent companies  and their efforts in bioplastic automotive car parts manufacturing

  • A front-runner in adopting bioplastics is Japanese car manufacturer Toyota which uses bioplastics such as biobased polyesters, biobased PET, and PLA-blends in its production process
  • Italian manufacturer Fiat is another major player in the automotive industry relying on biobased plastics. Fiat used castor oil-derived long chain polyamides to replace their fossil based equivalent in more than one million vehicles; the company plans to further increase this number.
  • Faurecia and Mitsubishi Chemical have announced a joint programme for developing a bioplastic based on biobased PBS that can be used in mass-production for automotive interior parts, such as door panels, trim and strip, structural instrument panels, air ducts, door panel and console inserts.
  • In 2011, BASF and Ford teamed up to develop a sustainable, plant-sourced castor oil-based foam product for the 2012 Ford Focus instrument panel

 

Read more : http://en.european-bioplastics.org/blog/2013/09/09/bioplastics-going-strong-in-automotive-sector/

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Royal DSM’s Develops Crankshaft Cover from Castor Polyamides

In September 2013, Royal DSM, together with its automotive component specialist partner KACO, has developed a lightweight multi-functional crankshaft cover in EcoPaXX, DSM’s bio-based polyamide 410, for the latest generation of diesel engines developed by the Volkswagen Group. EcoPaXX, a bio-based, high-performance long-chain polyamide, is made mainly from tropical castor beans.

This EcoPaXX cover incorporates integral seals in PTFE and liquid silicon rubber (LSR), as well as various metal inserts. It will be used on Volkswagen’s new MDB modular diesel engine platform, implemented across its Audi, Seat, Škoda and VW brands.

Compared with covers made in aluminum, system costs for the EcoPaXX cover are considerably lower, due in part to the use of an integrated, fully automated production cell for the component at KACO. Weight has been reduced considerably too, since the EcoPaXX grade is 45% less dense than aluminum.

The development represents a step forward in terms of sustainability, from material production to the vehicle on the road. DSM’s EcoPaXX polyamide 410 is 70% derived from renewable resources, and the polymer is certified 100% carbon neutral from cradle to gate.

Read more from: http://www.greencarcongress.com/2013/09/20130902-dsm.html

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Bio-Polyamides: Where Do They Come From?

Article retrieved from http://polymerinnovationblog.com

Bio-polyamides have been available commercially since the first half of the 20thCentury, when Rilsan®11 was first introduced. Since then, other partly or fully bio-sourced polyamides have been commercialized for a range of applications. This blog post explains how organic chemistry and catalysis can be critical to converting renewable raw materials into technologically valuable polymers.

Both 11-aminoundecanoic acid and sebacic acid are products from chemical conversion of ricinoleic acid, the major fatty acid component of castor oil.Castor oil is hydrolyzed to give ricinoleic acid and glycerol, which are separated. High temperature treatment of the methyl ester of ricinoleic acid produces 11-undecanelic acid and heptanal4. Bromination of the double bond of 11-undecalenic acid followed by reaction with ammonia gives 11-aminoundecanoic acid, the monomer used to make PA 11 (Rilsan® 11).

Sebacic acid is produced commercially by “fusing” ricinoleic acid with alkali (reacting at high temperature with sodium or potassium hydroxide). This chemistry has been known for decades and has been optimized significantly.

At present, there is no large-scale commercial source of bio-based 1,12-dodecanedioic acid, although potential routes have been reported. Polyamides produced from this monomer rely on 1,12-dodecanedioic acid prepared from petroleum-derived butadiene, so such polymers are only partially bio-sourced, assuming that the diamine component is derived from renewable sources.

Read the full story from here –http://polymerinnovationblog.com/bio-polyamides-where-do-they-come-from/

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Solvay’s Bio-Based Amorphous PPA for Smart Mobile Devices

Solvay Specialty Polymers,France has recently announced a major extension of its Kalix® high-performance polyamide (HPPA) product line, launching a new portfolio of bio-based high-performance polyamides offered for use in smart mobile devices such as smart phones, tablets, laptops, and other smart mobile electronics.

The introduction includes the Kalix® HPPA 3000 series, the first bio-based amorphous polyphthalamides (PPAs), and the Kalix® 2000 series, a family of bio-sourced semi-crystalline polyamide grades that provide outstanding impact performance. Solvay unveiled the new materials at the 19th International Trade Fair for Plastics and Rubber Worldwide, which was held on Oct. 16-23, in Dusseldorf, Germany.

Both the 2000 and 3000 series contain monomers that come from the sebacic acid chain which is derived from non-food competing and GMO-free castor oil.

Read more from here: http://www.solvay.com/en/media/press_releases/20131016-Kalix-Bio.html 

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Get to Know the Latest in the Castor Industry at ICOA 2014

The 2014 International Castor Oil Association General Meeting will be held on May 20-22 2014 at the Vienna Marriott in  Vienna. Network with global leaders in the castor trade and find out the latest trends in the castor industry at ICOA 2014.

Book early as there is limited availability at our special rate of €199. Reservations can be made for the special rate by clicking the following link: http://bit.ly/19FoTlO

Read more: http://www.icoa.org/

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Radici Conforms to European Environmental Benchmarks

Radici Chimica SpA, which makes ‘Radipol’ polyamide 6,6 that is used in the textile industry for the extrusion of nylon yarns has become the first chemical company in Europe to obtain product and environmental footprint certificates in line with European Commission LCA-based requirements. Radici received the two certificates OEF (Organisation Environmental Footprint) and PEF(Product Environmental Footprint)

OEF – issued for all aspects of the production plant; PEF – issued for PA6.6, HMDA, adipic acid, nitric acid, MAB, diamine heads and tails, and CO2

Read more :http://www.radicigroup.com/en/news-media/news/radici-chimica-spa-obtains-oef-and-pef-conformity-assurance-13844

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ARKEMA and Addiplast Joins to Develop New Polyamide Compounds

As the world’s sole chemicals manufacturer to offer the entire long chain polyamides range, polyamide 12 as well as biosourced polyamides PA11and PA10 derived from castor oil, Arkema is the leading player in the production of specialty polyamides.

Addiplast has emerged both in France and in Europe as one of the leaders in the design of technical compounds and polymers derived from polyamides, polyolefins and polycarbonates. With its expertise in the design of these materials and related processes, Addiplast became a partner of Arkema in the early 2000s.

Through this strengthened partnership, Addiplast will develop from biosourced polyamides (Rilsan® PA 11 and Hiprolon® PA 6-10, PA 10-10, PA 10-12) and other specialty long chain polyamides (Rilsamid® PA12, Hiprolon® PA 6-12) supplied by Arkema, a new range of high-end materials and compounds for injection molding. These compounds are designed for high added value applications requiring specific performances.

Marketed under the trade names Addinyl® (polyamides of fossil origin) and Addibio® Renew (biosourced polymers), these solutions fulfil demanding specification requirements in terms of mechanical strength and/or chemical resistance. They will serve on the European market diversified segments, including automotive, electronics, sports and leisure, new energies and new technologies.

Read more from :http://www.4-traders.com/ARKEMA-17031/news/ARKEMA–and-Addiplast-join-forces-to-develop-new-polyamide-compounds-17381566/

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Do’s and Don’ts of Castor Cultivation

Here is a brief blog post which helps the castor farmers to understand the do’s and do not’s while cultivating castor. Article excerpts from http://www.ikisan.com

  • For proper tilth and good seed bed preparation, plough the land immediately after pre-monsoon showers followed by 2-3 harrowings with blade harrow after rains.
  • Farmers are required to purchase the hybrid seed from authorised registered seed agent and ensure its viability
  • However, they need not renew seed stock of their improved varieties every year.
  • Using certified seed once obtained from authorised agencies/sources, interested farmers can easily meet their requirement of quality seeds and maintain the varieties for atleast 3-4 years without any appreciable deterioration.
  • Seed may be treated with Thiram or Bavistin 3g/kg seed to protect from seed borne diseases like Alternaria leaf blight, seedling blight and wilt.
  • A plant population of 55,500/ha has been found to be optimum for rainfed castor in all regions
  • For achieving required plant stands in dry lands, a seed rate of 10-15 kg/ha is adequate depending on seed size.
  • The optimum date of sowing for castor in Andhra Pradesh is first fortnight of June.
  • Plough with single seed drill help in placement of seed at appropriate moist zone and ensures better germination and growth.
  • As far as possible place the seed in a moist zone 10-12cm below the soil surface to ensure proper moist soil seed contact for sufficiently long period and thereby obtain good germination.

Read more from here – http://www.ikisan.com/Crop%20Specific/Eng/links/ap_castorCrop%20Establishment.shtml

Global Castor Conference – February 2014, Gujarat, India

Global Castor Conference – 2014 is scheduled to be held on Saturday, 22nd February 2014 at Hotel Courtyard by Marriott, Ahmedabad, Gujarat,India. The Solvent Extractors Association of India ( SEA) is organizing this conference. The event is supported by International Castor Oil Association (ICOA), U.S.A.

This 12th International Conference will provide an unique opportunity for open discussions & exchange of views about the issues pertaining to Castor business, to find solutions to the problems faced by the manufacturers, importers & exporters, technologists, players from the commodity exchanges, brokers & dealers of
castor business all over the world.

The event will also feature a presentation on the findings of Castor Crop Survey-2013 conducted in key Castor growing States viz. Gujarat, Rajasthan & A. P. by the world renowned market survey agency, M/s AC Nielsen.

More from: http://www.seaofindia.com/images/67/Global%20Castor%20Conference%202014-%20First%20Announcement%20Cum%20Invitation.pdf

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Castor Helps Sugarcane Farmers in Erode, Tamilnadu

Sugarcane farmers of Andiyur village in Erode district, Tamilnadu, India use castor solution to trap pests that  invades the root system of the crops and the plants.  Farmers there face a recurring pest problem called white grub that makes it difficult for them to harvest a good yield. Managing the pest proves difficult for the groundnut cultivators as the grub lives under the soil and its life cycle takes a year to complete. One of the farmers then accidentally got the idea of using castor seeds as an effective trap for the insects.

Some five litre mud pots are buried till the neck at different places in the field, pulverised with about 5kg of castor seed and mixed with five litres of water. The solution was kept undisturbed in a plastic drum for 10 days.

On the 11th day two litres of this liquid is poured in all the buried pots and  is filled with water till the neck portion. The odour that comes out from the pot attracts the pest towards it.

In addition to white grub this solution is also found effective to control the notorious rhinoceros beetle that infests coconut trees.

In fact, coconut growers are well aware about the rhino beetle and its damage to fronds and small nuts. This method is a good way of controlling it and does not require a big investment.

The mud pot with the solution needs to be buried near the trunk of the tree and attracted by the odour from the pot the insects come towards it and fall into the pot and die.

Collect the dead insects found floating in the pot once every 2 days and keep filling the pot with solution whenever the quantity gets reduced. The solution can be kept for a period of three months,

Read more: http://www.thehindu.com/sci-tech/agriculture/fermented-castor-solution-traps-pests-of-sugarcane-groundnut/article4412009.ece