June 8, 2015

Cellulose to become the supermaterial of the future?

Knitwear manufactured from recycled cellulose.
Knitwear manufactured from recycled cellulose.
EEVA SUORLAHTI

Cellulose might be supermaterial of the future. This is the view of the VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland, Aalto University, Tampere University of Technology and the University of Vaasa, the collaboration partners who received a 4.9 million-euro strategic research opening grant from Tekes (the Finnish Funding Agency for Innovation). The project was coordinated by VTT.

The researchers worked together to develop new biomaterial applications. During the course of the project development included yarn made directly from pulp fibre suspension.

The Design Driven Value Chains in the World of Cellulose (DWoC) 2.0 project is seeking new design-driven applications for cellulose and is developing related technology as well as exploring new ways to create value in cellulose-based ecosystems. These new materials and innovations can replace fossil-based raw materials in textile products, interior decoration elements and car interior materials.

“The Finnish Government Programme emphasises the importance of the bioeconomy for Finland’s future and economic renewal,”  says project coordinator Johanna Buchert, vice president, Research, VTT.

“Renewal necessitates giant research-driven leaps, strong risk taking and national investment in research and innovation funding,” Buchert continues. “Wood, the ‘green gold’ of Finland, is a renewable raw material and wood cellulose can be converted to a golden opportunity when we find new high added value applications alongside the traditional paper and pulp industry.”

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