Energy / Climate Change

January 31, 2008


Development of Plastic Made from CO2 Underway

Keywords: Climate Change Energy Conservation Environmental Technology Government Manufacturing industry University / Research institute 

The launch of a new research project aimed at developing a highly functional aliphatic polycarbonate resin using carbon dioxide (CO2) was announced on September 11, 2007. The project, led by Professor Kyoko Nozaki of the Graduate School of Engineering at Japan's University of Tokyo, is a collaborative effort between business and academia supported by New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization (NEDO) under its fiscal 2007 research and development subsidy program, which aims to develop practical uses for innovative technology.

Four universities are participating in the project--Tokyo University, Keio University, Tokyo University of Science, and Kanazawa University--along with four companies--Teijin Ltd., Sumitomo Chemical Co., Sumitomo Seika Chemicals Co., and Mitsubishi Corp. The project will run from September 2007 to March 2010 at an estimated cost of 460 million yen (about U.S.$4 million). The four companies will pursue any practical applications resulting from the project during this period and after 2012.

Aliphatic polycarbonate is a compound generated by reacting epoxide compounds with CO2, while aliphatic polycarbonate resin is made of approximately 50 percent of CO2 by weight. Therefore, practical use of aliphatic polycarbonate resin can be expected to help save energy and fossil fuels. Furthermore, a wide range of uses can be expected for aliphatic polycarbonate resin, such as biodegradable plastic and biomass material, since it can be used as a substitute for many existing resins.

Posted: 2008/01/31 10:04:50 AM
Japanese version