Chris Holcroft
<c.holcroft@glass-ts.com>

 


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Engineered PolySaccharides: Opportunity as Biodegradable Interlayer Material
for Laminated Glass.

1*C Holcroft, 1M Magallanes, 1K Buchanan, 2V Mishra, 2J Ohane, 2N Behabtu and 2C Lenges
1Glass Technology Services Ltd, 9 Churchill Way, Chapeltown, Sheffield, South Yorkshire, UK
2DuPont Industrial BioSciences, 200 Powder Mill Road Building E353, Wilmington DE 19803, USA

Enzymatic Polymerization is emerging as a scalable process to polymerize sucrose into engineered polysaccharides.  Polymer architecture and material properties can be controlled selectively to provide access to novel differentiated biomaterial platforms.  One first example for such an engineered polysaccharide is alpha-1,3-polyglucose (alpha-1,3-glucan) which was prepared using this bioprocess.

This work introduces first results on the application of this material for use as an interlayer in laminated glazing products.

Similar to traditional thermoplastic polymer based laminated films, the alpha-1,3-glucan described in this paper, shows excellent adhesion to the glass surface and in contrast, can be applied from a simple, solution based coating process.  However, at the end of its practical use or if desired, the glass surface can be exposed to water and the alpha-1,3-glucan coating will revert to a gel like consistency which is easy to remove from the glass.  The alpha-1,3-glucan could subsequently be digested by bacteria for complete biodegradation.  This overall material balance would allow for much easier recycle options for glass laminates compared with traditional interlayer materials. Especially within a circular economy context, this approach may provide attractive recycle and end of life options.

The alpha-1,3-glucan readily dissolves into homogeneous solutions under strong caustic conditions.  Glass products can be laminated to generate typical interlayer systems with similar or superior performance compared with traditional poly-vinyl-buterate (PVB) interlayer materials.  Based on the simple and direct application options provided by this polysaccharide system, the energy intensive application and storage requirements traditionally required for the use of PVB could potentially be avoided. This paper will discuss initial lab trials which demonstrate good adhesion to glass, impact and tear resistance suggesting comparable or superior performance to PVB.