Scientific Program

Conference Series Ltd invites all the participants across the globe to attend International Conference and Exhibition on Biopolymers and Bioplastics San Francisco, USA.

Day 1 :

OMICS International Biopolymers and Bioplastics-2015 International Conference Keynote Speaker Florent Allais photo
Biography:

Florent Allais is currently a Full Professor in Chemistry at AgroParisTech (Paris, France) and the Director of the Chair ABI (Industrial Agro-Biotechnologies) in Reims (France). He has completed his PhD from the University of Florida in 2004 and postdoctoral studies in the group of Prof. Janine Cossy (ESPCI, Paris, France) and Dr. Jean Boivin (ICSN-CNRS, Gif-sur-Yvette, France). Prof. Florent Allais has presented his research in numerous international conferences, published more than 20 papers in peer-reviewed journals, granted/filed 8 patents, served as reviewer of various journals and as Associate Editor of Frontiers in Chemistry (Chemical Engineering). His research is dedicated to the development and optimization of sustainable industrial processes and high valued-added products from agro-resources (e.g., biorefineries by-products, agro-waste). More precisely, with expertise in white biotechnologies, green chemistry and downstream processing, his Chair aims at the development of platform molecules like organic acids or aromatics/phenolics - obtained from fatty esters, polysaccharides and lignocellulosic biomass - that will be used to create new functional bio-based additives, polymers or materials. The chair also aims at the production of valuable sustainable chemical intermediates that can be used in chemistry, in the food/feed industry or in cosmetology as antimicrobials, antioxidants, flavorings or surfactants to name a few

Abstract:

A family of renewable bisphenols containing bio-based phenolics and polyols from lignocellulose was prepared through chemo-enzymatic processes under mild conditions. The enzyme-catalyzed condensation steps lead to high purity grade bisphenols in high to excellent yields.
These bio-based bisphenols were then used as monomers for the preparation of various types of alternating aliphatic/aromatic polymers such as copolyesters, polyurethanes, poly(ester-alkenamers) and linear phenolic homo-oligomers. The newly obtained homo- and copolymers were then characterized by NMR, GPC, DSC and TGA. These analyses revealed not only good thermal stabilities but also a broad range of accessible Tg.

Keynote Forum

Amar K Mohanty

Premier’s Research Chair in Biomaterials and Transportation, Canada.

Keynote: Advanced Biorefining in the Sustainable Development of Bioplastics and Biocomposites

Time : 9:25-9:50

OMICS International Biopolymers and Bioplastics-2015 International Conference Keynote Speaker Amar K Mohanty photo
Biography:

Dr. Amar K Mohanty, a Full Professor and Premier’s Research Chair in Biomaterials and Transportation is the Director of Bioproducts Discovery & Development Centre at University of Guelph, Ontario, Canada. He is an international leader in the field of bioplastics, biobased materials and advanced biorefining with a focus in engineering new sustainable materials. He has more than 500 publications to his credit including 260 peer-reviewed journal papers, 25 patents (granted/filed), several conference presentation, 15 book chapters and three edited books - his total citations being 13,827 with h-index of 56. He was the recipient of the Andrew Chase Forest Products Division Award from the American Institute of Chemical Engineers (AIChE) and Jim Hammer Memorial Service Award from the BioEnvironmental Polymer Society. His R&D excellence has helped in developing a number of industrial products and recently his research innovations have brought three biobased products to the market place.

Abstract:

In the emerging bioeconomy era, both the biochemical and thermochemical biomass processing streams are well positioned to develop biobased chemicals, materials and fuels, through well-integrated biorefinery concept. Currently, the co-products and byproducts from biofuel industries are considered low-value products. However, these products show immense opportunities in engineering value-added bioplastics and biomaterials for industrial uses. \\\\\\\\r\\\\\\\\n“There is no such thing as waste; waste is a co-product looking for an opportunity” defines our approach to “advanced biorefining” concept. The co-products and byproducts like: distillers’ dried grains with soluble (DDGS) from corn ethanol industries; crude glycerol from biodiesel industry; lignin from cellulosic ethanol industries and biochar from biomass pyrolysis industries, are being constantly explored for engineering new biobased materials. Resulting value-added bioplastics and biocomposites will not only help improve the economic return of the related renewable energy industries, but will also help substitute currently used petroleum-based counterparts in the manufacturing sectors. These newly developed materials show promising potential for uses in interior automotive parts, consumer products and eco-friendly packaging materials. This approach is one of the mechanisms to reduce our dependence on petroleum, as well as the greenhouse gas (GHS) emissions. This presentation will highlight the opportunities for engineering new materials from biofuel co-products, as well as under-valued bioresources for value-added industrial uses.

  • 9: Polyhydroxyalkanoates
Location: San Francisco
Speaker

Chair

Nazim Cicek

University of Manitoba, Canada

Speaker

Co-Chair

Steven Pratt

The University of Queensland, Australia

Speaker
Biography:

Nazim Cicek, is a Professional Engineer and Professor in the Department of Biosystems Engineering at the University of Manitoba, Canada. He currently also serves as the Acting Department Head. He received his M.Sc. degree in Chemical Engineering in 1995 and Ph.D. degree in Environmental Engineering in 1999 from the University of Cincinnati, OH, USA. After working for 2 ½ years in the private sector, he returned to academia in November 2001. Nazim’s research interests are in the general area of biological waste treatment, biofuel and bioenergy production processes, bio-polymer production, fermentation, anaerobic digestion and nutrient removal from wastewater. Nazim has authored or co-authored over 80 peer-reviewed journal articles and presented his research results in numerous international conferences.

Abstract:

Medium chain-length polyhydroxyalkanoates (mcl-PHAs) are a class of polymers synthesized by certain species of bacteria as an energy storage mechanism. These polymers have shown promise as a potential renewable alternative to conventional petroleum-based plastics and fuels. Use of an inexpensive and renewable carbon source such as biodiesel waste glycerol and free fatty acids is a requisite for cost-effective mcl-PHA production. Under certain operating conditions, Pseudomonas putida LS46 has been shown to be capable of robust growth on these substrates while achieving relatively high cellular mcl-PHA content. Preliminary tests in reactors with a 3-5 L working volume have shown that for growth on substrates metabolized via β-oxidation pathways (pure octanoic acid, biodiesel waste fatty acids), the application of oxygen limitation (>0.01 mg/L O2) improved the cellular PHA content from 45% to 71% using pure octanoic acid, and from 17% to 35% using biodiesel waste fatty acids as compared to conventional nitrogen limitation. The improvement in cellular PHA content using oxygen limitation compensated for the slowed growth rate, resulting in a higher overall mcl-PHA productivity. For growth on waste glycerol, nitrogen limitation was found to be more effective than oxygen limitation, resulting in 25% cellular PHA content. For all substrates, fed batch strategies have been used to reliably achieve biomass yields of 12-15 g/L, in a reactor with working volumes up to 50 L. Further improvements to cell density and overall productivity may be achievable through the design and operation of continuous or semi-continuous feed bioreactors.

Speaker
Biography:

I am a senior lecturer in the School of Chemical Engineering at the University of Queensland. The theme of my research activities broadly encompasses biorefining and the development of sustainable biomaterials. I currently lead Australian Research Council (ARC) funded projects on developing novel PHA wood composites, generating PHA from methane, and managing algae harvested from coal seam gas water. My major contribution to the field of environmental biotechnology is the invention of the TOGA® Sensor for examination and control of biotech/bioprocess systems; The TOGA® Sensor is a platform for world-class research and it has been a key tool for many PhD projects.

Abstract:

Polyhydroxyalkanote (PHA) bioplastics have properties similar to polypropylene and PET, and are therefore outstanding candidates to replace some fossil fuel derived materials. Moreover, being both bio-based and biodegradable, PHAs allow for a closed loop carbon cycle and, unlike many other biomaterials on the market, they are both water resistant and UV stable. However, PHA is relatively expensive. This can be somewhat addressed by (i) producing PHA in open mixed microbial cultures using waste organic carbon as the feedstock, and (ii) compounding the polymer with fillers like wood flour; the use of wood flour in plastics is attractive for many reasons: it is abundantly available, biodegradable and low cost. This work lays a foundation for the development of high performance PHA-based wood plastic composites. The paper presents the compounding of commercial poly-(hydroxybutyrate-co-valerate) (PHBV) with low HV content (5%), with pine flour (300 µm and 550 µm). A range of PHA to wood flour ratios were considered. The mechanical properties (toughness and elongation to break), thermal behaviour and morphology of the produced materials were analysed, as was the water permeability. A preliminary analysis of the effect of surface modification on these properties was undertaken. The results are a benchmark for new biocomposites from HV-rich, waste-derived PHA. Our recent research shows that industrially relevant PHA can be readily synthesised in mixed cultures, which can utilise cheap and renewable carbon sources such as waste streams from the pulp and paper industry. This, coupled with the innovative approach of making direct use of PHA-rich intact cells in wood fibre composites, thereby avoiding PHA extraction, means the PHA based materials could be cost-competitive with alternatives. Further, it is suspected that HV-rich mixed culture PHA will lead to good melt flow and hence effective contact between wood fibre and the biopolymer, as well as enable lower processing temperatures than are necessary for PHB based materials, thereby reducing thermal degradation and energy costs. Also, the concept overcomes a perceived limitation of PHA since the wood fibres act as nucleating agents for rapid crystallisation thereby circumventing the material stability issues associated with secondary crystallisation.

Speaker
Biography:

Dr. Maria Reis has a PhD in Biochemical Engineering, and is Group Leader of the Biochemical Engineering Group (http://sites.fct.unl.pt/bioeng/home) at the Universidade Nova de Lisboa, Portugal. Her research area is Environmental/Industrial BioEngineering, with special focus on the development of sustainable bioprocesses for the removal of pollutants from water and wastewater streams, and for the exploitation of industrial wastes for the production of biopolymers. Dr Reis is coauthor of 4 National patents and 5 International patents. She has published over 200 papers in scientific journals, and she is presently Editor of Water Research.

Abstract:

A high variety of wastes/wastewater/surplus products from food industry are a promising source of organic matter (e.g. sugars) that can be valorised through biotechnological processes. Anaerobic acidogenesis converts these feedstocks into fermentation products (FP) with multiple applications, among which the production of polyhydroxyalcanoates (PHA) by mixed microbial cultures. The aim of this study was to examine acidogenic fermentation of twelve industrial wastes (including wastes or by-products of fruit, wine, beer and oil industries) for their potential as substrates for PHA production to be used in food packaging. It is known that the profile of FP highly affect the properties of subsequently produced PHA, namely the proportion of HB (acetate, butyrate and ethanol):HV (propionate, valerate, lactate) precursors. The physico-chemical characteristics of the feedstocks (organic matter, sugars, nutrients and solids) were analysed, and batch tests were carried out to assess their acidogenesis potential. Based on these results and on estimated availability, seasonability and cost of each waste, the most promising feedstock (fruit processing waste) was further investigated. The latter studies were carried out in a continuous stirred tank reactor inoculated with sludge from a full scale anaerobic digester, to determine the operating conditions that maximise productivity and enable the manipulation of the FP profile. The FP stream was fed to a reactor containing a PHA accumulating mixed culture. The polymer produced was offline and online analyzed in terms of monomeric composition and physical/thermal properties determined. This study demonstrated that fruit pulp waste is a valuable feedstock for acidogenic fermentation, and that controlling the acidogenic reactor operational conditions (pH, OLR, HRT) it is possible to manipulate the acidogenic fermentation products in order to produce an appropriate proportion of HB/HV precursors for food packing applications.

Jaewook

Stanford University, USA

Title: PHA Copolymers from methane

Time : 10.50-11.05

Speaker
Biography:

Jaewook Myung is a PhD candidate studying environmental engineering at Stanford University. His current work focuses on production of methane-derived polyhydroxyalkanote (PHA) biopolymers and methanotrophic nitrogen removal. He holds BS degree in civil and environmental engineering at KAIST and MS degree in civil and environmental engineering at Stanford University. He is originally from Daejeon, South Korea.

Abstract:

Methane is a low cost and readily available feedstock for production of polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHAs). An enrichment of Type II methanotrophs and two Type II pure cultures (Methylocystis parvus OBBP and Methylosinus trichosporium OB3b) were grown under exponential growth conditions in fill-and-draw reactors with ammonium as sole nitrogen source. Harvested cells were incubated in the absence of nitrogen with various combinations of methane and co-substrates to assess polyhydroxyalkanoate (PHA) production capacity. Methane was required for PHA production. With fed methane alone, only poly(3-hydroxybutyrate) (P3HB) was produced; when methane was supplemented with 3-hydroxybutyrate, additional P3HB was produced; when methane was supplemented with propionate, copolymer poly(3-hydroxybutyrate-co-3-hydroxyvalerate) (PHBV) was produced; when methane was supplemented with valerate, PHBV levels increased, and the percentage of 3-hydroxyvalerate incorporated into the PHBV increased as the concentration of added valerate increased. We conclude that methane plays a critical role as the source of energy for assimilation of fatty acid co-substrates and that the quantity and composition of PHA produced can be modified by the co-substrates added and their concentration. We also conclude that there is a trade-off between the specific rates of PHA production and co-substrate concentration. Higher co-substrate concentrations decrease specific rates of PHA production.

Break: Coffee Break: 11.05-11.20 @ Sierra A
  • Track 2: Future and Scope for Biopolymers and Bioplastics
    Track 8: Production and Commercialization of Biopolymers and Bioplastics
Speaker

Chair

Bingkun K. Chen

Mayo Clinic, USA

Speaker

Co-Chair

Bo Shi

Kimberly-Clark Corporation, USA

Session Introduction

Bo Shi

Kimberly-Clark Corporation, USA

Title: Bio-based polyethylene blends including non-wood biomass materials

Time : 11.20-11.40

Speaker
Biography:

Dr. Bo Shi completed his PhD in Environmental Engineering from University of Delaware in 1997. He has started to work for Kimberly-Clark Corporation in Neenah, WI since 1996, emphasizing on corporate environmental sustainability, biopolymer processing and modification, and alternative natural fibers for a range of personal care product manufacturing. His project research and development efforts concentrate on effective utilization of biodegradable, renewable and sustainable materials for bio-based economy. He serves as a patent licensing corroborator at Algix for commercialization of algae-based bioplastics. He published a lot of papers in several technical journals and filed/granted about 25 US patents.

Abstract:

Utilization of renewable and sustainable materials such as starch for thermoplastic films and injection molded articles has been pursued within the plastic industry. However, starch is one of the food sources for human beings. This presentation addresses the use of non-food and non-wood materials such as lignocellulose in polymeric blends for rigid container packaging. Lignocellulose is a structural material that is the main constituent of plants, which is comprised of cellulose, hemicellulose and lignin. Miscanthus and kenaf core were respectively processed through torrefaction or milling to achieve the necessary uniformity in particle sizes ranging from 40 to 60 microns prior to thermoplastic compounding using ZSK-30 twin screw extruder. The polymeric blends were then molded using BOY 22D injection machine and sample mechanical properties were evaluated. The results indicate that tensile values for Braskem bio-based polyethylene SHA7260 blends, containing up to 20% of the torrefied miscanthus, are at parity to the neat polymer. A similar trend is observed for Braskem bio-based polyethylene SHA7260 blends, containing up to 20% of the milled kenaf core. The sample elongation for all polymeric blends decreased relative to the neat polymer as lignocellulose content in the polymeric blends increased. According to the 24 hour shrinkage data, the sample dimensional stability is better than the neat polymer, indicating there is a restriction in polymer chain mobility when the processed non-wood biomass is presented and less sensitive to the presence of moisture. This work proves a new concept to effectively utilize non-food and non-wood materials for plastic manufacturing.

Gordon Selling

Department of Agriculture Agricultural Research Service Peoria, USA

Title: Extrusion processing of zein to provide higher value with improved processability

Time : 11.40-12.00

Speaker
Biography:

Dr. Gordon Selling is a Lead Scientist working for the United States Dept. of Agriculture’s Agricultural Research Service in Peoria, IL since 2003. He received his Ph.D. in Organic Chemistry from the University of Illinois – Urbana/Champaign in 1988. In his current work he performs research on developing new higher value products using corn/soy/pennycress/cotton protein and corn starch. His research focus is on electrospinning chemically modified proteins, chemically modifying proteins using reactive extrusion and producing starch graft co-polymers. Prior to working in Peoria, he worked for E.I. DuPont for 15 years. At DuPont he worked in their spandex fiber business. He worked on developing new polymers and additives that produced higher value fibers.

Abstract:

Corn protein (zein) is one of the main co-products of corn bio-ethanol production and is known to have good film forming properties. However, zein also has deficiencies that may limit its applicability in the food packaging market. The properties of zein based articles will change on exposure to moisture and chemical modification is necessary to reduce the impact of moisture. Various techniques have been developed to achieve improved properties, however much of this work has been done in solution. In order to develop a successful food packaging product, in addition to product value, the process being utilized must use the most economical techniques. Extrusion processing is perhaps the most economical method for processing polymeric materials. Research will be presented demonstrating how extrusion processing effects the properties of zein articles. Extrusion processing at temperatures of up to 140 C can be performed with minimal reduction in product value. Zein can be recycled using extrusion processing to deliver articles with good properties. The impact of temperature and recycling on zein was carried out at temperatures from 100 – 300 C and up to 7 passes through the extruder at an extrusion temperature of 140 C. Molecular weight, secondary structure, and tensile properties were measured under all sets of conditions. Zein can be altered chemically using reactive extrusion techniques to provide higher valued articles. Solvent resistance and tensile properties were evaluated on the chemically altered zein. The information presented will be of value to scientists and companies interested in utilizing extrusion processing of their biobased materials.

Speaker
Biography:

Dr. Manju Misra is a professor in the School of Engineering and holds a joint appointment in the Dept. of Plant Agriculture at the University of Guelph. Dr. Misra’s current research focuses primarily on novel bio-based composites and nanocomposites from agricultural and forestry resources for the sustainable bio-economy targeting the development of bio-based and eco-friendly alternatives to the existing petroleum-based products. She has authored more than 380 publications, including 250+ peer-reviewed journal papers, 25 book chapters, and 15 granted patents. She was an editor of the CRC Press volume, “Natural Fibers, Biopolymers and Biocomposites,” Taylor & Francis Group, Boca Raton, FL (2005); American Scientific Publishers volume “Packaging Nanotechnology”, Valencia, California, (2009) and “Polymer Nanocomposites”, Springer (2014). She was the chief editor of “Biocomposites: Design and Mechanical Performance” Woodhead Publishing (in press June 2015). She was the 2009 President of the BioEnvironmental Polymer Society (BEPS). She is one of the Associate Editors of the journal “Advanced Science Letters”. In 2012, Dr. Misra received the prestigious “Jim Hammer Memorial Award” in Texas, USA from the BioEnvironmental Polymer Society. Her current research is primarily focused on novel biobased polymers, fibres and composite materials from agricultural and forestry resources for the sustainable bio-economy; and application of nanotechnology in materials uses.

Abstract:

Lignin, a natural polymer synthesized by plants, has been studied as a renewable, low-cost, and highly available precursor for production of nano to a few micro diameter carbonized fibers. Annually about 40 to 50 million tons of lignin is produced as the byproduct of paper and cellulosic ethanol industries and it is the mostly non-commercialized residue. In this research, electrospinning of lignin followed by carbonization of the fibers have been studied. Carbonization was performed by following a two stage process, i.e., thermal stabilization in air followed by carbonization in nitrogen atmosphere. The effects of lignin type, binder polymer type, and carbonization conditions on the properties of carbonized fibers were studied. The properties of interest include morphology studies by scanning electron microscopy and atomic force microscopy; carbon structure studies by Raman and X-ray diffraction spectroscopy; surface area measurements; thermal and electrical conductivities of the carbonized material.

Speaker
Biography:

Andreas Kunkel is a Vice President and Head of Biopolymer Research of BASF. After his PhD in Microbiology at the Max Planck Institute in Marburg, he started his BASF career within the Central R&D department followed by Marketing Positions within the divisions Fine Chemicals and Performance Polymers. Since starting in BASF in 1999, his focus has been the strategic development and marketing of chemicals and polymers based on renewable resources using the synergies between classical chemistry and biotechnology.

Abstract:

Introduction: The field of biopolymers requires the close cooperation of chemistry and biology on the level of renewable monomers, polymers and end of life mechanism (e.g., composting) respectively. Using BASF as an example, this symbiosis of chemistry and biology will be presented. Renewable Monomers: Renewable monomers can be obtained by conversion of renewable feed stocks either by classical chemical catalysis or via a direct fermentation process. Succinic acid will be the BASF example to show the opportunities of such new processes. Polymer-Compound-Application: Ecoflex ® is the preferred blend partner for bio-based and biodegradable polymers which typically do not exhibit good mechanics and processability for film applications by themselves–ecoflex F® therefore is a synthetic polymer which enables the extensive use of renewable raw materials (e.g., starch, PLA). The BASF brand name for compounds of ecoflex® with PLA is ecovio®. The application range is very broad from film applications like organic waste bags, shopping bags or agricultural mulch films to biodegradable coffee capsules and stiff foamed packaging. End of Life: Polymer biodegradation commonly begins with the (hydrolytic) breakdown of the main chain often enzymatically catalyzed followed by the mineralization by microorganisms present in the respective habitat. Therefore elucidation of the interaction of microorganisms and their respective enzymes with polymer substrates in different environments and deducing relevant structure-property relationships is an important task of BASF biopolymer research.

Francys K V Moreira

National Nanotechnology Laboratory for Agribusiness, Brazil

Title: Continuous casting: A soft processing approach to fabricate polysaccharides-based bioplastics

Time : 12.40-13.00

Speaker
Biography:

Francys Moreira is an engineer with proficiency in natural polymers. He has devoted his scientific career to polysaccharides, mastering their physical chemistry and processing. He currently serves as a postdoc at the National Nanotechnology Laboratory for Agribusiness (LNNA) of Embrapa Instrumentation, a Brazilian federal research organization. His research interests include biopolymers in general, nanotechnology, organic/inorganic hybrids and bionanocomposites, sensor and multifunctional materials for intelligent/active packaging.

Abstract:

The last decades have been marked by an intensive research on polysaccharide processing as an effort to fabricate environmentally benign packaging materials at large scale. Most focuses have been on melt processing techniques due to the already established knowledge of petroleum-based plastic processing. However, the melt processing of polysaccharides has shown to be challenging due to the thermomechanical instability of these biopolymers. Here we introduce the continuous casting as a soft, rapid, and large-scale compatible approach to fabricate bioplastics from polysaccharides. This covers the implementation of the continuous casting process for cellulose derivatives such as hydroxypropyl-methyl-cellulose and carboxymethyl-cellulose, and starch with variable amylose/amylopectin ratio. Other successfully tested polysaccharides were chitosan, pectin carrageenan, and alginate. Bioplastic sheets as thin as 10 μm are possible to be efficiently formed in minute fractions when any Newtonian aqueous polysaccharide solution is used. However, we disclose how the continuous casting can be adjustable to non-Newtonian polysaccharide fluids. Polysaccharide-based bioplastics fabricated by continous casting fit a broad range of mechanical properties for application in numerous food packaging sectors. The future outlooks of this soft processing for nanotechnology is also covered.

Speaker
Biography:

Silvio originates from Cosenza (Italy). He obtained his Laurea Magistrale in Materials Science from the University of Milano working on the preparation of polymer nanocomposites for controlled light diffusion (March 2012). Silvio joined Prof Steve Howdle’s group at the University of Nottingham in September 2012. His PhD project is part of the REFINE network and he is investigating the use of scCO2 for renewable polymeric materials synthesis and materials processing. In 2014 he gave a talk at the European Meeting on scFluids in Marseille and presented a poster at the Gordon Research Conference on Green Chemistry in Hong Kong.

Abstract:

The use of green monomers for the replacement of fossil-based raw materials is an attractive research subject of modern polymer science . To achieve a completely green process, enzymes have been investigated as polymerisation catalysts . Unfortunately, the high melting point (>105 °C) of some diacids and their insolubility in non-polar solvents necessitate the use of their esters and limits the range of natural monomers that could be used without pre-modification . Moreover, the use of high temperature is expensive and can lead to side reactions and enzyme deactivation . Here we show that scCO2 can overcome these issues. In recent years the interest on the use of scCO2 as a medium for polymer synthesis and processing has increased steeply . ScCO2 is able to plasticise many polymers at temperatures below their glass-transition temperature and melting point, therefore opening new opportunities for polymer synthesis and modification . Here we investigate the poly-condensation of bio-based commercially available long-chain diacids and diols under scCO2. Telechelic polyesters with targeted molecular weight were synthesised by end-capping the chains with functional molecules. The use of scCO2 as a reaction medium allowed for the use of Candida Antarctica Lipase B (CaLB) as a catalyst at a temperature as low as 35 °C. Thus, easily preserving the functionality of the end-capper and the enzyme activity, so that it can be then recycled. The products, obtained with good yields, have been characterised to assess their structural and thermal properties. Finally, the telechelic chains were cross-linked to form useful naturally derived films.

Break: Lunch Break: 13.15-14.00 @ Sequoia-Redwood
Speaker
Biography:

Amy Goddard is currently in the final year of her Ph.D at the University of Nottingham, UK, supervised by Prof. Steve Howdle & Dr. Derek Irvine. Her project forms part of the REFINE network working towards developing new sustainable materials for the polymer industry, funded by the European Commission. She is a member of the Process Innovation Team at Croda Ltd, a world leading specialty chemical company, and is an associate member of the Royal Society of Chemistry. She has presented her work at international conferences including the Gordon Green Chemistry Conference in Hong Kong & Ecochem in Switzerland.

Abstract:

The ring-opening polymerisation (ROP) of biobased D,L-lactide (DLLA) using a range of renewable polyol co-initiators is an essential route to tailoring the properties of poly(lactic acid) (PLA). ROP is normally conducted in the melt at high temperatures (≥ 140 C) with the need for harsh post-reaction treatment to remove toxic catalysts and residual monomer. Using supercritical carbon dioxide (scCO2) we have shown significant reduction in reaction temperatures allowing us to investigate the use of temperature sensitive biobased co-initiators. Furthermore through the use of scCO2 extraction, we can efficiently remove residual monomer & metal-catalysts, leaving a pure product. The impact of structure on the biodegradability of these low molecular weight products strongly influences their ability to act as a dispersants. Our data shows that modifying the co-initiator and varying the PLA chain length are key to influencing the product properties. Our results could increase the potential of PLA as a renewable and biodegradable replacement for petrochemical derived polymers, whilst also widening its commercial application as a green dispersant. We believe our new “green” approaches to the production and purification of PLA are significant steps towards the development and application of the next generation of biopolymers, taking into account not only the choice of raw material but also the sustainability of processes and techniques used in synthesis.

M. Fuentes Sainz

University of Nottingham, UK

Title: New terpene-based polymers

Time : 14.15-14.30

Speaker
Biography:

Marina originates from Santander (Spain) and obtained her MSc in Chemical Synthesis and Reactivity from the University of Oviedo. Marina joined the REFINE (Renewable Functional Materials) network in September 2012 as a PhD student in the University of Nottingham, where she is investigating the synthesis of new polymeric materials using terpenes

Abstract:

The use of readily available and naturally occurring feedstocks to overcome our reliance upon petroleum derived materials is a growing challenge for our society. One of the most attractive alternatives are terpenes, due to their natural abundance, their structural diversity and their availability from citrus and wood waste streams in the multi-tonne scale. There have been significant efforts in the past to create polymers from terpenes, but extensive studies have to date yielded only a few examples of low Mn, low Tg or cross-linked polymers. Therefore polymeric materials obtained from terpenes are still very limited. Our approach consisted on functionalising a wide range of terpenes to create a variety of new acrylate and methacrylate monomers, via a 2-step methodology or a catalytic route, in a 50g scale. These new terpene derived monomers are easily polymerisable via free radical or controlled/living polymerisation. A variety of linear, branched and crosslinked polymers has been synthesised in a controlled fashion yielding polymers with very different properties and Tgs ranging between -18 and 142 o C

Eric W. Cochran

Iowa State University, USA

Title: Bioadvantaged thermoplastic elastomers at iowa state university.

Time : 14.30-14.45

Speaker
Biography:

Dr. Eric Cochran, Associate Professor of Chemical Engineering at Iowa State University, received his Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering from University of Minnesota in 2004. His areas of interest are in the equilibrium and dynamic properties of polymeric systems that undergo self-assembly as well as the creation and development of biomaterials from renewable sources. Since his arrival to Iowa State, he has been recipient of the Camille and Henry Dreyfus New Faculty Award in 2006, of the CAREER Award by the NSF Division of Materials Research in 2009, and a Karen and Denny Vaughn faculty fellowship in 2011. He also currently serves as the Deputy Director of CB2, the Center for Bioplastics and Biocomposites, which leverages National Science Foundation and industry funds to develop new biobased products and materials.

Abstract:

In this talk I will present an overview our ongoing work at Iowa State University in the area of bioadvantaged plastics; that is, plastics formed largely from biorenewable resources that offer advantages in cost and utility over their nearest petrochemically derived analogs. ISU has been a leader in this area since the pioneering work of ISU chemistry professor Richard LaRock, the first to convert vegetable oil into thermoset plastics and elastomers. Today, our newly formed NSF Center for Bioplastics and Biocomposites serves the interests of over 20 member companies in the development of new processes and products in the field of biobased polymeric materials. The Cochran Research Group's presence in this area began nearly four years ago with our discovery that controlled radical polymerizations such as ATRP and RAFT* can transform vegetable oils into thermoplastic rubbers. Combined with hard segments such as polystyrene or polymethylmethacrylate, we can produce block copolymers that serve the thermoplastic elastomers industry. We have since applied our technology to other biobased feedstocks, including glycerine, lignin-based phenolic residues, sugars, isosorbide, and lactic acid. This new palette of biomonomers is creating a new array of biobased thermoplastics, asphalt modifiers, sealants, adhesives, and viscosity modifiers that will find commercial success not because they are "green", but rather because they offer unique traits that their competitors cannot. *Atom Transfer Radical Polymerization and Reversible Addition-Fragmentation Chain Transfer polymerization

  • 14:45-15:45 Workshop on Polyhydroxyalkanoate (PHA) bioplastics : Synthsis and material properties by Steven Pratt, The University of Queensland, Australia

Session Introduction

Steven Pratt

Un iversity of Queensland, Australia

Title: Polyhydroxyalkanoate (PHA) bioplastics: synthesis and material properties
Speaker
Biography:

I am a senior lecturer in the School of Chemical Engineering at the University of Queensland. The theme of my research activities broadly encompasses biorefining and the development of sustainable biomaterials. I currently lead Australian Research Council (ARC) funded projects on developing novel PHA wood composites, generating PHA from methane, and managing algae harvested from coal seam gas water. My major contribution to the field of environmental biotechnology is the invention of the TOGA Sensor for examination and control of biotech/bioprocess systems; The TOGA Sensor is a platform for world-class research and it has been a key tool for many PhD projects.

Abstract:

Polyhydroxyalkanote (PHA) bioplastics have properties similar to polypropylene and PET, and are therefore outstanding candidates to replace some fossil fuel derived materials. Moreover, being both bio-based and biodegradable, PHAs allow for a closed loop carbon cycle and, unlike many other biomaterials on the market, they are both water resistant and UV stable. However, PHA is relatively expensive. This can be somewhat addressed by (i) producing PHA in open mixed microbial cultures using waste organic carbon as the feedstock, and (ii) compounding the polymer with fillers like wood flour; the use of wood flour in plastics is attractive for many reasons: it is abundantly available, biodegradable and low cost. This work lays a foundation for the development of high performance PHA-based wood plastic composites. The paper presents the compounding of commercial poly-(hydroxybutyrate-co-valerate) (PHBV) with low HV content (5%), with pine flour (300 µm and 550 µm). A range of PHA to wood flour ratios were considered. The mechanical properties (toughness and elongation to break), thermal behaviour and morphology of the produced materials were analysed, as was the water permeability. A preliminary analysis of the effect of surface modification on these properties was undertaken. The results are a benchmark for new biocomposites from HV-rich, waste-derived PHA. Our recent research shows that industrially relevant PHA can be readily synthesised in mixed cultures, which can utilise cheap and renewable carbon sources such as waste streams from the pulp and paper industry. This, coupled with the innovative approach of making direct use of PHA-rich intact cells in wood fibre composites, thereby avoiding PHA extraction, means the PHA based materials could be cost-competitive with alternatives. Further, it is suspected that HV-rich mixed culture PHA will lead to good melt flow and hence effective contact between wood fibre and the biopolymer, as well as enable lower processing temperatures than are necessary for PHB based materials, thereby reducing thermal degradation and energy costs. Also, the concept overcomes a perceived limitation of PHA since the wood fibres act as nucleating agents for rapid crystallisation thereby circumventing the material stability issues associated with secondary crystallisation.

  • 15:45-16:45 Workshop Session: Biobased Plastics – Materials and Applications by Richard A Gross, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, USA

Session Introduction

Richard Alan Gross

National Science Foundation, USA

Title: Biobased plastics – materials and applications
Speaker
Biography:

Professor Richard A. Gross He is currently a Full Professor and a Constellation Chaired Professor at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI). His research is focused on developing biocatalytic routes to biobased materials including monomers, macromers, prepolymers, polymers, surfactants and other biochemicals. Current research programs include whole-cell routes to biosurfactants, w-hydroxylation of fatty acids, protease-catalyzed peptide synthesis, engineering cutinase for polymer transformations, developing biofibers for composites and chemical conversions of biobased monomers to bioplastics and biomaterials. He has over 500 publications in peer reviewed journals, been cited about 15,000 times, edited 6-books and has 26 patents (granted or filed). Prof. Gross was the recipient of the 2003 Presidential Green Chemistry Award in the academic category. In 2010 he was selected as the Turner Alfrey Visiting Professor. He founded SyntheZyme LLC in 2009 and serves as Chief Technology officer.

Abstract:

Concerns over production of chemicals from non-renewable petroleum derived carbon have resulted in increased pressure on industries to shift existing materials production from petrochemicals to readily renewable carbon sources. The introduction of biobased building blocks into commercial products is technically challenging since they must compete on a cost-performance basis with petroleum derived products whose production has been optimized and for which an existing infrastructure is in place. This workshop will provide an up-to-date overview of the basic and applied aspects of bioplastics, focusing primarily on thermoplastic polymers for material use. Material covered will emphasize important bio-based polymer types such as thermoplastic starch, lignin, polyhydroxyalkanoates, bio-based monomers such as lipids, poly(lactic acid), other aliphatic and aliphatic-aromatic polyesters, polyamides, polyolefines, biofibers and end-of-life considerations. Current information will be given on the stage of product development and material suppliers.

Break: Coffee Break: 16.45-17.00 @ Sierra A