Novel Feedstock for Biodegradable Plastic

Award Information
Agency: Environmental Protection Agency
Branch: N/A
Contract: EP-D-6-050
Agency Tracking Number: EP-D-06-050
Amount: $69,035.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Solicitation Topic Code: N/A
Solicitation Number: N/A
Solicitation Year: N/A
Award Year: 2006
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): N/A
Award End Date (Contract End Date): N/A
Small Business Information
1910-107 Lavington Ct., Rock Hill, SC, 29732
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Joan Combie
 (803) 980-4052
Business Contact
 Joan Combie
Title: CEO
Phone: (803) 980-4052
Research Institution
Landfills and waterway are inundated with tons of non-degradable plastics derived from petrochemicals. An unusual polysaccharide has been identified which can be extruded as a biodegradable plastic. Unique properties allow it to replace certain petroleum-based plastics while already meeting the price of other bioplastics. To gain quick acceptance, details of the process developed during the proposed project will be published. Revenues will be obtained form sales of the polysaccharide. As volume of polysaccharide sales increase, the price will further decrease. Plastic manufacturers will not need to change equipment; the change will be in the raw materials. Environmental regulations, problems with plastic disposal and increased in the price of oil are concerns for the $375 billion plastics industry. For many, production of a ¿green¿ plastic would provide a competitive edge and open new markets. Preliminary work has shown it is possible to extrude this polymer into a plastic that will dissolve in water in less than 12 hrs. An innovative formulation will make a second product resistant to water for 12 hrs but sill soluble in less than one week. The solubilized plastic is easily degraded into sugar monomers, used as a energy source by numerous organisms. Derived from an agricultural product and safe for both users and the environment, this polysaccharide reduces pollution throughout its life cycle. The objective is to optimize formulation of the polysaccharide to make plastic forms with high tensile strength and plastic films with good barrier properties. Extruded products will be tested for water solubility. This bioplastic is safe for contact with food and does not release toxic fumes during incineration. Potential applications include cabinets for TVs and computers, printer/toner cartridges, internal aircraft panels, food wrap, packaging and toys.

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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