14. Jun 2024

CO2 emissions and citrus peels to plastics

CO2 emissions and citrus peels to plastics

AIMPLAS (Valencia, Spain) promotes the development of new sustainable and efficient materials for the construction industry obtained from carbon dioxide (CO2) generated by industries in the Valencian Community and waste produced by the citrus sector.

Also participating in the project are the Institute of Chemical Technology (ITQ, UPV-CSIC) , Zuvamesa, a company specializing in producing citrus juice, Lamberti Iberia, a producer of chemical products, and Laurentia Technologies, which specializes in the synthesis and manufacture of nanomaterials.

The aim of the project is to contribute new, sustainable formulations using CO2 and waste from the citrus industry in Valencia to make materials for the construction industry.

This research project has received economic funding from the Valencian Innovation Agency (AVI) and the European Union within the framework of the Valencian Community ERDF Programme for the 2021-2027 period.

The aim of the BUILD-LIMONENE initiative is to develop new additives and biodegradable materials with a lower carbon footprint that can be used in the construction industry and become viable alternatives to the materials currently available in the market. Some of the most in-demand applications are sustainable polymers, additives and coatings.

This new technology will contribute to the recovery of waste from different industrial sectors that all play an important role in the Valencian Community, such as food waste, especially citrus waste. BUILD-LIMONENE will make it possible to use citrus peels and generated CO2 emissions and apply them in the construction industry.

Sustainable alternatives to raw materials of fossil origin
This project presents an additional advantage over traditional markets of additives and coatings for construction materials. Currently, most materials are obtained from raw materials of fossil origin and there are practically no sustainable alternatives.

Based on this goal, the processes of producing polycarbonates and polyurethanes based on or synthesized from CO2 are being studied to open a new field of innovation that promotes the development of new construction materials with fewer negative effects.

The project is currently in the experimentation stage. The catalytic reaction of limonene oxide and CO2 is being optimized so that polycarbonates with specific characteristics can be obtained. It has also been possible to identify the different varieties of oranges and mandarins with the highest limonene content. Limonene is a natural chemical substance that can be extracted from citrus peels and is a fundamental ingredient in these formulations.

Within the framework of this project, AIMPLAS is working on studying and optimizing the processes necessary for combining limonene oxide with CO2 in order to obtain sustainable polymers, while Zuvamesa is in charge of the first step in the chain, the extraction of purified limonene from different Valencia oranges.

The Institute of Chemical Technology (ITQ, UPV, CSIC) is studying the epoxidation reaction of limonene with samples of Valencian oranges and mandarins of different types and sizes. This is done using sustainable catalysts prepared by Laurentia Technologies. Finally, Lamberti Iberia, the company in the additive chemical sector, validates and formulates sustainable materials for the construction industry.

This initiative is aligned with the conclusions on circular economy of the Strategic Committee of Specialized Innovation (CIEI), which includes the development of materials that include CO2 and food waste applied in the construction industry to reduce its carbon footprint. BUILD-LIMONENE is also aligned with the main concepts of Strategy of Intelligent Specialization (S3) of the Valencian Community, which is coordinated with the Council of Innovation, Industry, Commerce and Tourism.


By the way: in issue 05/2012 bioplastics MAGAZINE reported about "Polyurethanes from CO2 and Orange peels" (see: https://issuu.com/bioplastics/docs/bioplasticsmagazine_1205/40)

Privacy policy notice

This website uses external components, such as Fonts, maps, videos or analysis tools that can all be used to collect data about your behavior. Privacy policy