Huskers bring the heat to improve biodegradable plastics


Introducing a simple step to the production of plant-derived, biodegradable plastic could improve its properties while overcoming obstacles to manufacturing it on a commercial scale, says new research from Nebraska.

Use link below for the full story….

HUSKERS BRING THE HEAT TO IMPROVE BIODEGRADABLE PLASTICS
PHOTOS: Three high-resolution color photos are available at http://go.unl.edu/p8io.

Lincoln, Nebraska, Aug. 31, 2017 – Introducing a simple step to the production of plant-derived, biodegradable plastic could improve its properties while overcoming obstacles to manufacturing it commercially, says new research from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and Jiangnan University.
That step? Bringing the heat.
Nebraska’s Yiqi Yang and colleagues found that raising the temperature of bio-plastic fibers to several hundred degrees Fahrenheit, then slowly allowing them to cool, greatly improved the bio-plastic’s normally lackluster resistance to heat and moisture.
Its thermal approach also allowed the team to bypass solvents and other expensive, time-consuming techniques typically needed to manufacture a commercially viable bio-plastic, the study reported.
Yang said the approach could allow manufacturers of corn-derived plastic – such as a Cargill plant in Blair – to continuously produce the biodegradable material on a scale that at least approaches petroleum-based plastic, the industry standard. Recent research estimates about 90 percent of U.S. plastic goes unrecycled.
“This clean technology makes possible (the) industrial-scale production of commercializable bio-based plastics,” the authors reported.

NOT EASY BEING GREEN

Source: Huskers bring the heat to improve biodegradable plastics | Nebraska Today | University of Nebraska–Lincoln

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