Is this the Future of Making Plastics?

When we think of the process of making plastics there are two things that we think of: petroleum and recycled plastics. However, it looks like we could be thinking of another process in the future involving some unlikely ingredients – sugar and carbon dioxide.

This is an innovative process of making plastics that has been invented by scientists from the Centre for Sustainable Chemical Technologies in Bath University. They have created biodegradable plastics that could be the future in replacing unstable plastics made from crude oil.

Polycarbonates are used for things such as bottles, glasses lenses or coatings, however these include toxins known as BPA. The scientists have created an alternative form of the polycarbonates that are free from these toxins and made using sugars and carbon dioxide.

This is a biodegradable plastic and can be degraded back into carbon dioxide and sugar, this new plastic is also bio-compatible so can be used in the medical field.

The process of producing this new plastic involves adding carbon dioxide to sugars at a low pressure and at room temperature.

Currently the plastic is being modified and fine-tuned to create the perfect properties by altering the chemical properties of the plastic.

Could this be the future of plastics or at least a step in the right direction for a sustainable future for plastics?

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