Dutch chemicals’ innovator Avantium will announce later this year a joint application development partner in a specific polyamide (nylon) area. Avantium is now in the second year of a joint development effort with NatureWorks for polyester materials. “The focus (with NatureWorks) is on bottle (PET replacement and possibly new applications), film and fiber,” says Gert-Jan Gruter, chief technology officer for Avantium.
Avantium is currently building a pilot plant for its YXY chemical process which will start up early next year. “From there we want to go as fast as possible to a demo plant for pre-marketing material (1000 ton– 2013) and to commercial production (30000 ton — 2015-16),” adds Gruter. .
The output of the YXY process are furanics, which are chemicals that are formed when you take carbohydrates and remove the water. Avantium says it has developed a patented chemical catalytic process technology to convert biomass directly into furanics.
Avantium expects to initiate other polymer and plasticizer development collaborations later this year.