Seongnam, Korea – SK Chemicals has begun the full-scale production and supply of the biopolyol polyoxytrimethylene ether glycol, or PO3G. The facility in Ulsan has a capacity for the production of several kilotons of the biopolyol, which is being sold under the brand name Ecotrion.
The polyol is made from fermented corn. When used in place of petrochemical-derived polyols, it says, it produces softer textile materials and artificial leather. It can also confer improved elasticity and abrasion resistance.
Its lifecycle assessment, the company claims, shows it has a 40% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions when compared to polyols from petrochemical sources. It has been given eco-friendly certification by Vincotte in Belgium and the US Department of Agriculture.
It is already working with LX Hausys and companies in the automotive sector to develop eco-friendly artificial leather, including Hyundai and Kia.
‘We plan to consider additional expansion in response to increasing market demand,’ said Jung Jae-jun, SK Chemicals’ head of new business development.