Local Bioplastics

Local Bioplastics creates composite materials by integrating natural resources from the bioregion into bioplastic bases. The resulting bioplastics, which are compatible with plastic industry production methods, offer alternatives to the aesthetics and function of fossil-based plastic materials.

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Using local resources to develop high-performance bioplastics that are intrinsically tied to the bioregion.

Local Bioplastics brings together designers, scientists, and engineers to research production of biodegradable and recyclable plastics. This research has two goals: on the one hand, to generate uses for agri-food industry coproducts; on the other, to give manufacturers access to a local inventory of bio-sourced materials that can replace certain fossil-based plastics.

To create responsible and bio-sourced plastics, the Local Bioplastics team has identified the resources available in the bioregion. Some are abundant and renewable, such as algae, and others are undervalued coproducts of local agri-food industries, such as sunflower plants, olive pits, and rice hulls. In the form of powder or fibers, the raw materials from the bioregion are mixed with bioplastic matrices to obtain improved bioplastics.

The shaping techniques used for the bioplastics are chosen according to their appearance (color, transparency, texture) and their structural properties (density, elasticity, resistance). Prototypes and small runs of objects are 3D printed using filaments. For larger volumes, the composites can be shaped using conventional industrial methods, for example, injection presses or extrusion techniques.

Formed into tiles through an industrial injection process, the algae-augmented bioplastic was tested for resistance to fire, UV rays, water, and cleaning products, and was approved for applications in demanding contexts. It has been applied as a wall covering in public buildings, and in exterior spaces exposed to the elements.

Mono- and multifilament extrusion spinning methods are used to create threads and fibers. The resulting experimental products are used by the Textile Lab in textile creation, and dyed through the Color Geographies project.

Project team

  • Atelier LUMA

    Arles, France

  • Vegeplast

    Tarbes, France

  • Agromat

    Tarbes, France

  • Ecole d'ingénierie et d'innovation textile (ENSAIT)

    Roubaix, France

  • UMR Montpellier

    Montpellier, France

  • SDTech

    Alès, France

  • Cousin Composite

    Wervicq-Sud, France

  • Groupe Salins, Salins du Midi et de l’Est

    Aigues-Mortes, France

  • Solis Culturae

    Châteaurenard, France

  • Le Champ des Couleurs

    La Roque-d'Anthéron, France

  • CRITT Horticole de Rochefort

    Rochefort, France

  • Moulin Cornille

    Maussane-les-Alpilles, France

  • European Green Compound

    Publy, France

  • IMT Mines d'Alès

    Alès, France

  • Raffaella Bortoluzzi

    New York, USA

  • Vitra

    Weil Am Rhein, Switzerland

  • Studio Klarenbeek & Dros

    Zaandam, The Netherlands

  • Coldep

    Villeurbanne, France

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