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Germany: Reduced Carbon Footprint

Covestro Launches First TPU Based on Carbon Dioxide Technology

| Editor: Alexander Stark

At the Dormagen plant, Covestro already operates a production plant that produces CO2-based polyols for flexible polyurethane foams.
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At the Dormagen plant, Covestro already operates a production plant that produces CO2-based polyols for flexible polyurethane foams. (Source: Covestro)

Covestro is developing and marketing new polyether carbonate polyols that are produced with the aid of carbon dioxide. The company now offers the first representative of a new series of thermoplastic polyurethanes (TPU) containing polyether carbonate polyols based on CO2 technology.

Dormagen/Germany — With the new TPU, customers can reduce the carbon footprint of their products. The company claims that the new TPU products left a lower carbon footprint than conventional ones, and helped close the carbon cycle. They also conserve fossil resources and, unlike many bio-based materials, would not compete with food production.

Desmopan 37385A has a hardness of 85 Shore A. Its mechanical properties were at least at the level of conventional TPU grades of similar hardness, and even exceeded some of them, Covestro states. The plastic is designed for extrusion, but is also suitable for injection molding. The application spectrum covers typical applications of conventional TPU grades with comparable hardness and ranges from soles and upper shoe components to sportswear, handles and knobs to packaging for sensitive electronics.

The company plans to expand the new TPU series with variants of different hardness. According to the supplier, a product with a hardness of 95 Shore A, for example, whose melt cures rapidly during processing, is well advanced in development.

Covestro cooperates with companies and research institutions to use CO2 technology as a synthesis platform for other large-scale chemical raw materials. For instance, work is underway on new CO2 -based polyols for rigid polyurethane foams that could be used, amogst others, in the thermal insulation of buildings, in automobiles and in sports equipment. At the Dormagen plant, the manufacturer is already operating a production plant that produces CO2 -based polyols for flexible polyurethane foams. The latter are used in the commercial production of upholstered furniture and mattresses.

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