London - Imperial College development company Econic Technologies Ltd is getting funding for developing catalysts that enable polycarbonate polyols and polymers, and subsequently polyurethanes and polycarbonates, to be produced using carbon dioxide as one feedstock.
This route cuts the proportion of petrochemicals in these materials, says a press release from the London science university. Since raw materials costs can account for up to 80 percent of the sales price of the finished product, Econic expects the reduced petrochemical content to translate into cost-competitive products.
Innovations Group plc, a leading technology commercialisation and investment group, is part of £1.1 million ($1.7 million) funding for Econic Technologies Ltd (Econic), alongside Norner Verdandi, part of Norner AS, a technology consultancy and partner for polymers and materials industries.
Imperial says the catalysts Econic is developing "have significant potential across the global polyurethanes and polycarbonates markets, which are worth around $20 000 million and $11 000 million respectively.
"This funding will allow us to achieve the scale up of production and the investment in research and development we need for the next phase of the business. Having key investors on board, with their knowledge and expertise, makes this an exciting time for the business," said David Morgan, who recently became chairman of Econic.
Bayer MaterialScience is working in the same area, and has a pilot plant set up as part of a joint industry/university project to investigate making polyols for polyurethanes from carbon dioxide.