Functionalized expandable cellulose foams
|Funding from Vinnova||SEK 500 000|
|Project duration||September 2017 - March 2018|
|Venture||The strategic innovation programme Bioinnovation|
|Call||BioInnovation Prestudy stage 1, 2017|
Purpose and goal
The hypothesis was that biobased expanding foam could be produced by substances that develop gas when subjected to heat in combination with a cellulose source, thus forming gas pockets in the material that create the expanding cellulose foam. Overall, the material that could be produced under the project was considered to be a possible replacement for fossil-based foam plastics in some applications, but production costs in the short term are not sufficiently competitive.
Expected results and effects
3D-shaped expandable cellulosic foam would, for example, have an application as a packaging material for transport, be able to replace existing insulation materials in cars, with proper fire protection capability replace current padding in furniture or be used as building material for insulation against sound and heat or with the right strength to be used as reinforcement material for lightweight boards. The fossil-based materials that can be replaced are mainly polyurethanes and polystyrenes. The material needs more development in order to meet all technical requirements.
Planned approach and implementation
The project has been carried out in collaboration between OrganoClick and the largest manufacturer of burial coffins in Scandinavia, Nyarp, with an annual output of 120,000 coffins. In their operations, 3 areas have been identified which could need a biobased expandable cellulose foam, (1) absorbent material, (2) packaging materials and (3) reinforcement materials. It was a good idea to focus on applications early to sort out the most important technical requirements while also comparing estimated costs for the new product with costs for those already in use.