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Anellotech and its partners produce bio-based paraxylene – a key component in making green PET bottles.

Bio-based BTX aromatics (picture courtesy of Anellotech).High-purity bio-paraxylene is an important material for our business, especially from a sustainability viewpoint.

US sustainable technology company Anellotech and its joint development partners IFPEN and Axens have processed bio-based aromatics made at Anellotechs TCat-8 pilot plant to successfully recover high-purity bio-based paraxylene, which is a key component in making 100% bio-based PET bottles a reality.

In a statement, Anellotech said that this news was a key development milestone forthe company and global consumer beverage firm Suntory, as the two partners will collaborate to produce the bottles.

Anellotech (@Anellotech), IFPEN (@IFPENinnovation) and Axens (@AxensGroup) will now purify additional paraxylene to create pilot sample 100% bio-PET beverage bottles as well as sample quantities of bio-based benzene whose derivatives are used in clothing, toys, mobile phones and laundry detergent.

High-purity bio-paraxylene is an important material for our business, especially from a sustainability viewpoint.

Anellotech has been producing renewably-sourced aromatics for purification by IFPEN and Axens in Europe. Since the announcement of a successful two-week continuous trial in March 2018 at Anellotechs TCat-8 pilot plant in Texas, US, more than 4,000 hours of cumulative on-stream time have been achieved, according to Anellotech.

An initial volume of high-purity bio-paraxylene test samples has been produced. According to Anellotech, these samples have met ASTM International specifications for downstream derivatives in conversion to PET.

As larger amounts of paraxylene are purified, Anellotech will begin to make renewable PET resin for prototype bottle manufacture and product trials. According to the company, this will be the industrys first major production of bio-PET from continuous, cost-effective processing of non-food biomass.

The successful production of high-purity bio-paraxylene from non-food biomass feedstock represents a significant accomplishment for Anellotech, its partners and industry at large, as this latest breakthrough brings 100% renewable plastic bottles closer to reality, said David Sudolsky, President and CEO of Anellotech.

He went on to say that project planning was now underway for the first commercial process plant, which will use its proprietary Bio-TCat process to produce paraxylene, benzene and other aromatics from sustainably-sourced loblolly pine wood, to be used in bio-based chemicals and biofuels.

This is an important milestone to reach our mutual goal and see this technology become a reality, said Pierre Burzynski, Director of the Process Business Unit at IFPEN. Collaborating with Anellotech offers us a unique opportunity to participate in the development of an innovative and cost-competitive path to bio-aromatics, consistent with our objectives to develop cost-competitive renewable chemicals and fuels from non-food biomass.

As well as bio-paraxylene, Anellotech continues to work on the recovery of bio-benzene and toluene from TCat-8 output. According to the company, separation and purification of high-purity bio-benzene will enable sample volumes of a range of important bio-based polymers such as nylons, polycarbonate, polystyrene and acrylonitrile-butadiene-styrene to be produced.

New Call-to-actionYou may also be interested in reading…

Read:Anellotech and Suntory take major steps towards the reality of a 100% bio-based plastic bottle.

Read:Evian and Suntory continue their commitment to sustainability, developing 100% recycled bottles.

Read:Conversion of loblolly pine into BTX progresses with Anellotechs first successful performance test at pilot plant.

Visit:World Bio Markets, 1st-3rd April 2019, Amsterdam.

NEW!And available to download: Issue #12 of the Bio-Based World Quarterly.

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