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thyssenkrupp commissions first commercial bioplastics plant for COFCO in China

- PLAneo® technology from thyssenkrupp lowers CO2 emissions and reduces use of fossil raw materials -

Oktober 2018

COFCO_PLA production complex in Changchun/China   

Petroleum-based plastics
To reduce reliance on petroleum-based plastics, thyssenkrupp has developed a manufacturing process for the bioplastic polylactide (PLA). The world’s first commercial plant based on the patented PLAneo® technology recently started production in Changchun, China. It is operated by the Jilin COFCO Biomaterial Corporation, a subsidiary of COFCO, China’s largest food and beverage group. The new plant produces all standard PLA types, among other things for the production of eco-friendly packaging, fibers, textiles and engineering plastics.




Polyactide (PLA) is a 100% bio-based and compostable plastic which thanks to its physical
and mechanical properties can replace conventional oil-based polymers in many areas. The
starting material for PLA production is lactic acid, which is recovered from renewable
resources such as sugar, starch or cellulose.

Products made from Polyactid (PLA)

The economy

Sami Pelkonen, CEO of the Electrolysis & Polymers Technologies business unit of thyssenkrupp Industrial Solutions: “The bioplastics market will continue to grow in the coming years, not least due to the increasing environmental awareness of industry, governments and consumers. With our PLAneo® technology we want to do our bit to make the plastics sector more sustainable and resource-friendly. With it we enable our customers to produce high-quality bioplastics with a wide range of properties – at a price that is
competitive with conventional plastics.”

The PLAneo® technology in large-scale plants

PLAneo® technology converts lactic acid into PLA in a particularly efficient and resourcefriendly way. Another advantage is its transferability to large-scale plants with capacities of up to 100,000 tons per year. In developing the technology, thyssenkrupp’s subsidiary Uhde Inventa-Fischer profited from decades of expertise gained from the construction of more than 400 polymerization plants and extensive experience in the scale-up of new
technologies. For the new plant in Changchun thyssenkrupp provided the engineering, key plant components and supervision of construction and commissioning.

the press release




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