Researchers have modified a degradable bioplastic derived from corn starch for use in more eco-friendly electronic components. Researchers found that nanoparticles with PLA resulted in a transparent film that makes the material suitable for use in electronics.
As consumers upgrade their gadgets at an increasing pace, the amount of electronic waste we generate continues to mount. To help combat this environmental problem, researchers have developed bioplastic derived from corn starch or other natural sources. They report their development in ACS’ journal Industrial & Engineering Chemistry Research.
In 2014, consumers around the world discarded about 42 million metric tons of e-waste, according to a report by the United Nations University. This poses an environmental and human threat because electronic products are made up of many components, some of which are toxic or non-degradable. To help address the issue, Xinlong Wang and colleagues sought to develop a degradable material that could be used for electronic substrates or insulators.
The researchers started with polylactic acid, or PLA, which is a bioplastic that can be derived from corn starch or other natural sources and is already used in the packaging, electronics and automotive industries. PLA by itself, however, is brittle and flammable, and doesn’t have the right electrical properties to be a good electronic substrate or insulator. But the researchers found that blending metal-organic framework nanoparticles with PLA resulted in a transparent film with the mechanical, electrical and flame retardant properties that make the material a promising candidate for use in electronics.
As a sustainable platform chemical, green levulinic acid is considered to hold huge potential for the sustainable chemical industry of the future. Now, Italian companies Bio-on and Sadam Group are jumping on the bandwagon. [more]
Bioplastics producer FKuR has introduced new Bio-Flex blends which meet the stringent requirements of the French Energy Transition Law for plastic bags. Home compostable and up to 40% biobased, the new compounds fit the bill for a wide range of applications. [more]
The agreement between the two companies will require Georgia-based Danimer Scientific to boost production of its Nodax PHA. Biodegradable film resins will be developed to meet the sustainable flexible packaging requirements of PepsiCo’s global food and beverage business. [more]
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