NAMI’s Novel Technologies to Reduce Carbon Footprint

Due to the growing concern about sustainability, people are looking for solutions to reduce the high carbon footprint of petroleum-based plastics. Upcycling post-consumer recycled (PCR) plastics is one of the solutions. Global Recycled Standard (GRS) is the well-recognized certificate to show this added-value of eco-friendliness of the products, which requires products to contain at least 50% PCR plastics for GRS labeling. However, this requirement is stringent and challenging for the industry, as the incompatibility among the mixed plastics in PCR plastic waste and polymer degradation by thermal processes in plastic recycling cause significant quality deterioration. Nano and Advanced Materials Institute (‘NAMI’) has developed a series of upcycling technologies for PCR plastics, including ‘Universal Compatibilizer’ and ‘Functional Chain Extender’, which can improve the mechanical properties of recycled plastics while ensuring that their content is not less than 50% for higher sustainability.

In addition, bio-based alternative material is another solution for carbon reduction. NAMI’s bio-based rubber-like elastomer is a novel material that uses fully bio-based raw materials as the building blocks with tailor-made irregular chain designs, together with unique formulations and effective curing technology. It possesses elasticity, heat resistance, resilience and mechanical strength comparable with those of traditional silicone rubber products. This technology has been applied to develop a bio-based garment heat-transfer printing material, which was granted a gold medal in 2023 International Exhibition of Inventions Geneva and named a finalist in 2023 R&D 100 Awards, which is widely known as the ‘Oscars of Innovation’.

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