Renewable Biopolymers as Substitution for Bulk Plastics

Biopolymers consist of renewable resources. The concept deals with the development and implementation of technologies in the sector of renewable biodegradable materials.

Short Description




In recent years, biodegradable polymers have become more than ever the focus of much research interest. Numerous businesses and research institutes in the western world deal with research into natural and synthetic biodegradable polymers. In such polymers, problematic synthetic materials should be replaced to reduce avoidable waste. However, scepticism still exists over the economic viability of these products. This scepticism has previously hindered the large scale uptake of new technologies in this sector. Specifically in Austria, there are just a few small scale projects planned. There is a demonstrable need to bring this market segment to a point where economic viability is achieved. Advantages such as biodegradability and reduction of domestic waste yield a seminal development potential.

Therefore, the goal of this project is the creation of product development concepts, realisable in the short term, in market segments where biopolymers are superior to their petrochemical counterparts.

In this report the state of the market of biopolymers will be reported. Niche markets will be described and the possibilities of economic implementation will be demonstrated.

The concept is split into four work packages. In the first chapter "Investigation and product innovation", the state of the art is documented. On the basis of this, the second section "Material selection" describes different sorts of raw materials and their implementation in the biopolymer market. This chapter is supported by a "material screening" which consists of numerous tests to point out the spectrum of the mechanical characteristics of renewable materials. The work package "Economic estimations" deals with the implementation into product lines from a quantitative and monetary viewpoint. The last chapter contains the concrete plan of the implementation of a project consortium to develop and commercialise biopolymers.

Project Partners

Project management:

DI Harald Wilhelm
LKT Laboratorium für Kunststofftechnik
Wexstrasse 19-23, A-1200 Wien
Tel.: +43 (0)1 33126 / 555
Fax: +43 (0)1 3322106 - 31


LKT Laboratorium für Kunststofftechnik
Wexstrasse 19-23, A-1200 Wien