Polymers / Composites / Fibres

Additives for Biodegradable Performance Composites

In contrast to conventional polymer composites, biocomposites do not require any recycling. They decay over time and integrate back with nature.

They are made of biodegradable polymeric matrixes that are reinforced with plant-based fibres. The latter are lignocellulosic materials such as flax, hemp, corn or potato starch or wood flour. While those biomass sources certainly have good reinforcing properties, the disadvantages have made us develop optimized fibre solutions.

Refined olive stone powders, marketed under the brand name Olea FP (Functional Powders), are short fibers of extraordinary stability. Once tailored to a specific grain size, they will stay in shape so that only minimal particle breakage, i.e. dust formation, or agglomeration will occur.

Benefits of Biodegradability in Composites

Whereas fibres in most bio-composites are integrated in the material matrix in a way that they do not degrade over time, certain application require precisely this effect. Numerous objects are designed to last only for a limited time, which has traditionally produced waste.

BioPowder.com additives help you solve the challenges of recycling: our functional powders combine favourable degradation times with a light weight, a variety of texture options and strong reinforcing properties.

Proven applications of Olea FP include:

  • Funeral urns: olive stone powder can be integrated in harmoniously designed, durable and handy urns. A light weight, easy blending with decorative pigments and a slide-proof surface texture can be achieved with Olea FP of grain sizes up to 800 microns. Biodegradability of the material prevents any damage to the soil.
  • Packaging and household items: straws, plates, cutlery, toothbrushes: Olea FP is a sought-after additive for any bio-compound that will come in contact with the human body or food items. If these materials degrade over time, significant costs can be saved on recycling.
  • Design objects and toys: the principles of “fast fashion” have led designers of furniture, lamps, toys and other decorative objects to create more within shorter periods of time. Biodegradable plastics – especially when made from innovative and aesthetic fibres–attract environmentally conscious consumers.
  • Medical implants: in orthopaedic applications, i.e. when foreign materials are surgically integrated in the human body, biocompatibility is key. Bio-implants made from natural additives can blend with bone and muscles, which may not require surgical removal. In addition, adhesive tissue bonding films can be created with biodegradable properties to enhance wound treatment processes.
  • Agricultural films: the so-called agro foils are used to protect growing crops from the elements. If they are made of a biodegradable material, they can simply be ploughed into the farmland after the harvest season.

Olive Stone Composite Additives – Sustainable and Multifunctional

When opting for a renewable compounding additive, manufacturers often seek to combine the best technical and environmental aspects. With our approach of processing by-products only, we adhere to the highest possible standards of sustainability. In specific terms, this means:

  • Zero waste: our additives are made from side stream resources of the olive oil industry. Manufacturing is resource-saving and does not generate any waste.
  • A very low carbon footprint: our purely mechanical production process does not involve fossil fuels or excessive quantities of drinking water.
  • No crops: in contrast to additives made from potatoes or corn (e.g. starch, polylactic acid), Olea FP does not require any plantations.

BioPowder.com functional powders are suitable for the production of biocompositeswith diverse methods such as extrusion, compression, injection molding or thermoforming. Moreover, they can be used in polymer formulations for 3D printing.

Please do not hesitate to get in touch with your composites project. We support material scientists and manufacturers in finding the ideal additives for any application. All our products can be customized in small and industrial batches and delivered to any destination worldwide.
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