Vehicles’ manufacturers and suppliers are betting on biobased alternatives derived from renewable raw materials.
Vehicles are composed by different materials and a noticeable and fundamental fraction of them is constituted by plastic material, among which polyurethanes (PU). PU is fundamental since, thanks to its properties, it enables to reduce the overall weight of the car, resulting also in a lower fuel consumption. More and more vehicles’ manufacturers and suppliers are betting on biobased alternatives derived from renewable raw materials, but a biobased plastic able to mimic technical properties of PUs as well as to provide the required aesthetics and haptics has not been developed yet.
The BIOMOTIVE project is paving the ground towards the production and subsequent market penetration of biobased automotive interior parts with enhanced technical performance, improved environmental profile and economic competitiveness, with the aim of replacing the fossil-based, non-biodegradable counterparts. This project has received funding from the Bio Based Industries Joint Undertaking under the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 745766 2
Biomotive has a number of objectives.
• From a scientific and technological perspective, it intends to demonstrate the production of biobased raw materials and building blocks for the subsequent application in the formulation of biobased polyesters-polyols and bio-based thermoplastic TPUs (Thermoplastic PolyUrethane) and the production of novel cellulose-based regenerated fibres from paper pulp.
• From a final application validation perspective, BIOMOTIVE aims to validate, on an industrial scale, the bio-based polymers in producing interior fascia and/or door handles of cars, the foams for production of bio-based seats and the regenerated fibre for producing bio-based textile for covering vehicles seats.
• From an environmental, safety and resource efficiency perspective, BIOMOTIVE aims to reduce primary energy consumption and GHG emission of the developed processes and improve the recyclability of the end-of-life bio-products through eco-design strategies.
• From a socio-economic perspective, BIOMOTIVE aims to create new jobs in the bio-based, green chemistry sectors and agricultural sectors, while paving the way for additional investments in the bio-based economy in Eastern European countries . In addition, it seeks to expand the market for thermoplastic polyurethanes and regenerated fibres into the construction and the textile sectors.
BIOMOTIVE expects the project will deliver the following impacts:
• Demonstrate the improved mechanical and functional properties of the developed products against the products already available in the market.
• A total reduction in GHG emissions of up to 58% for the final products through formulating bio-based PUs and foams with bio-based monomers with improved environmental profile.
• Potential creation of approx.400 new jobs in the biobased sector.