Covestro has opened up an area of application for the use of CO2 in plastics production. Now foams for the automotive industry can also be produced partly using carbon dioxide instead of fossil raw materials such as crude oil. The innovative precursor cardyon® is used for this purpose. The Swiss company FoamPartner uses the technology to produce foams for various areas in the vehicle interior.
Carbon Dioxide as an Alternative Raw Material
“We are now taking another important step towards using carbon dioxide as an alternative raw material in the chemical industry on an even broader scale. In doing so, we are accelerating the transformation to a circular economy and supporting our positive momentum for growth in recent weeks,” says Sucheta Govil, chief commercial officer (CCO) of Covestro. Covestro has developed a novel technology with which up to 20 percent CO2 can be incorporated into so-called polyols. These are key components for polyurethanes, a widely used and versatile type of plastic. In this way, fossil raw materials are replaced, making Covestro an important contribution to resource conservation. Since the carbon contained in CO2 is recycled, the new process also supports the circular economy. CO2 polyols of the brand cardyon® are already being used in numerous other applications. “Novel materials like cardyon® are extremely important for the development and responsible production of sustainable foams. We are pleased to work with Covestro as one of the innovation leaders in the use of alternative raw materials,” adds Michael Riedel, CEO of FoamPartner.
Sustainable Foams from FoamPartner
The sustainable foams that FoamPartner will market in the future as a new product series under the name OBoNature™ will be laminated with a textile in a next step and will thus be used in the interior of vehicles. They will be processed primarily in headliners, but also in door panels and armrests, as well as in car seat covers. In addition to their resource-conserving production, the particularly low-emission foams are characterized by a longer service life and material resistance. Moreover, due to their optimized lamination behavior, they can be processed in reduced material thickness while at the same time enabling faster laminating processes. This saves both material and manufacturing costs.
Strategic Orientation Ensures Profitable Growth
Technologies such as these make a significant contribution to the promotion of the circular economy, to which Covestro is fully geared. In addition to alternative raw materials such as CO2, biomass and waste materials, the focus is on the development of innovative recycling technologies and the use of clean energy sources such as wind power in production.
polymer-additives.specialchem.com, 1 September
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