Heerlen, the Netherlands - Dutch materials group Royal DSM NV and US-based Novomer Inc. of Waltham, Massachusetts aim to develop what they classify as, "a revolutionary coating resin," using carbon dioxide as a raw material.
The project will benefit from the broad variety of DSM's technologies and market access, in combination with "the unique, efficient CO2 polymerisation technology of Novomer," said a 21 Jan announcement on the project.
Novomer will develop the chemistry and process technology for making polymers from CO2 and propylene oxide (PO), while DSM will convert the polymers into resins and formulate them for target applications such as coatings, adhesives and graphic arts.
DSM said that initial results of joint development work by the two companies "have been encouraging and suggest that this project might lead to completely new and improved application properties in coatings."
Given the fact that the resins use up to 50 percent by weight of CO2 as raw material, production will result in an improved carbon footprint, notes Heerlen, the Netherlands, headquartered DSM. The group also expects the process to be highly efficient, and that the resins will be able to replace conventional resins in a number of coating applications. DSM already makes a wide range of coatings resins, including water- and solvent-borne polyesters, urethanes, acrylics, alkyds and epoxy esters.
DSM notes that polycarbonate resins, with their superior performance and resistances, could theoretically find use in many coatings, but commercial use has previously been limited due to their cost and other weaknesses. New CO2-based aliphatic polycarbonates from DSM and Novomer "could potentially resolve these weaknesses," the companies said.
"DSM and Novomer are looking to develop the first polymer in more than a decade to enter the mainstream of the coating industry. This exciting development can lead to a breakthrough that could change the coating industry," said Rob van Leen, chief innovation officer with DSM.
"DSM brings a wealth of skills and industry knowledge to help drive the commercialisation of our technology in the coatings industry," commented Peter Shepard, vice president of Business Development for Novomer.