Cellulose replaces plastic in future packaging materials

Save favourite 12 Dec December 2017
Ulrika Andreasson SCA, Magnus Norgren Mid Sweden University, Maria Edblad MoRe Research, Kristin Syverud PFI RISE and Bo Westerlind Mid Sweden University are partners in the research project Plasticel.

RISE PFI, Mid Sweden University and MoRe Research are the main actors of the newly launched Interreg project PlastiCel. The project aims to develop nanocellulose and cellulose composites with barrier and insulation properties.

An example of what this project could lead to is future boxes for fish, currently made of plastic, being made of temperature insulating composite materials from cellulose/nanocellulose with good barrier properties against moisture and air. 

The aim is to develop biobased packaging that can be used in the transportation of goods over long distances, e.g. for the transportation of fish. The packaging is coated with a thin film of plasticized cellulose and nanocellulose, providing a barrier against oxygen, while a foam core of plasticised cellulose and nanocellulose provide insulation able to maintain a low temperature in the packaging during transportation. The project will increase knowledge of the materials, and produce pilot-scale packaging and demonstrators.

“At Mid Sweden University we carry out basic research on cellulose composites and nanocellulose,” says Professor of Chemical Engineering Magnus Norgren. “We look forward to the collaboration and hope that together we will be able to make further progress, while at the same time developing products that could replace fossil-based plastics.” 

“In order to reduce the amounts of plastic waste ending up in the oceans, it is important to replace plastics in as many applications as possible,” says Project Coordinator Malin Brodin at RISE PFI. “Cellulose is biodegradable and a good choice for raw material to replace plastic film and insulating foam used for packaging materials. The PlastiCel project is a good match for a number of projects at RISE PFI, and through close collaboration with our Swedish research partners we hope to find new solutions.” 

“PlastiCel is another nanocellulose project where our paper pilot machine will be important for the production of interesting demonstrators, in which nanocellulose is an important component,” says Project Coordinator Maria Edblad at MoRe Research. “With the help of technical modifications, the machine has been adapted for nanocellulose experiments, which makes it interesting for a wide range of projects. With the increasing interest in scaling up applications using nanocellulose, it has had quite the revival.” 

PlastiCel is a Swedish-Norwegian research project including researchers from RISE PFI, Mid Sweden University and MoRe Research. Industrial partners are SCA, Domsjö Fabriker and Essge-Plast. The project is funded by the EU’s Regional Development Fund Interreg.

For more information
Magnus Norgren, professor Mid Sweden University,
phone 010-142 88 77, email: magnus.norgren@miun.se
Malin Brodin, Research scientist, PFI RISE,
phone +47 466 12 099, email: malin.brodin@rise-pfi.no
Maria Edblad, coordinator, MoRe Research,
phone 0660-750 48, email: maria.edblad@more.se
Anna Svedberg, Reseach manager, MoRe Research,
phone 0660-750 41, email: anna.svedberg@more.se


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