BioplasticsBioplastics are already used in the packaging industry or in agriculture and show an interesting possibility to make the future of plastics more sustainable. These materials can be biodegradable and thus reduce the accumulation of microplastics in the environment. Also bio-based plastics are in use, which are independent of fossil resources and therefore have a reduced CO2 footprint. At TCKT we are investigating new possibilities to modify bioplastics and find new areas of application for these materials.
In the COMET project TCCV, we are working together with our industrial partner Geobrugg on a sustainable solution for geotextile products. Geotextiles are installed on areas and slopes, which are exposed to soil erosion in order to protect them and promote new plant growth. Up to now synthetic plastics are used for this purpose. Here, UV-light and weather-induced aging leads to the formation of microplastic, which is released into the nature. This problematic effect can be reduced by using biodegradable plastics such as PLA or PBS in geotextiles mats.
Modification of bio-based plastics for the production of fibers in textile applications
In the BioModFiber project we work with PLA and other bioplastics, which show potential for being used in industrial fiber production. The aim of the project is to produce bio-based textile fibers, which have improved mechanical properties, obtained by sophisticated modifications. In particular, the elongation at break and the restoring force of the fibers should be increased by these modifications. Different material combinations and additives are used to crosslink the polymer chains in order to achieve an elastic behavior of the fibers.