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Metabolix, Inc. Message Board

banks50 1 post  |  Last Activity: Dec 23, 2014 5:46 PM Member since: Dec 21, 1998
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  • banks50 by banks50 Dec 23, 2014 5:46 PM Flag

    JULY 23, 2014
    This development has extended the range of Metabolix’s PHA portfolio with crystallinity ranging from 0% or 60% to include fully amorphous products. The glass transition temperature (Tg °C) of these PHAs now extends from +5°C down to ~-30°C. Like the more crystalline products in its portfolio, these amorphous PHA products are 100% renewable and widely biodegradable in most environments where microbial activity is present. Metabolix sees exciting opportunities for using these new copolymers to modify and improve the performance of PLA and thereby expand the market potential of PLA fibers and filaments.

    At Natureworks’ 2014 ITR conference, Metabolix showed early results for modifying PLA using these new PHA copolymers. Metabolix is grateful to Natureworks for their support in this development effort. This work focused on the ability to improve PLA ductility without negatively impacting the PLA glass transition temperature (a common problem with using miscible plasticizers). Metabolix then demonstrated this effectiveness in PLA films by developing a much softer PLA blown film with flex modulus and toughness approaching HDPE. By varying modifier loads, flexibility and toughness in PLA blown and cast film can be adjusted across the range spanning from paper to HDPE. A series of these film prototypes were highlighted by Metabolix at Interpack 2014.

    More recently, Metabolix is excited by very interesting results in improving PLA fibers using with these new PHA modifiers. These developments were also highlighted at the 3rd PLA World Congress in Munich.

    Benefits of Modifying PLA fibers with PHA

    Ductility; Drape
    Improved touch and feel; Hand & Elongation
    Reduced Boiling Water Shrinkage
    The ductility improvement that characterized PHA modified PLA films is also clearly seen in PH

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