Making Glass from Sugar?

December 03 2008 / by amisampat / In association with Future
Category: Technology   Year: General   Rating: 1


Is there 'bio-plexiglass' in our future?

What happened?
Acrylic glass, or polymethyl methacrylate, could soon be made out of sugars, alcohol, or even fatty acids. Acrylic glass, which is sold under the name plexiglass, is used as a non shattering alternative to glass, in items such as protective goggles and vehicle lights.

Dr. Thore Rohwerder and Dr. Roland H. Muller were able to come up with an alternative solution to creating acrylic glass. Instead of it being a purely chemical process, based on petrochmical raw materials, they have found a way to use renewable raw bio-materials instead.

Why is the important to the future?

The demand for arcylic glass is expected to rise in the next few years. Having an alternative method to create this glass would benefit as the demand increases. Using renewable materials is an easy, fast solution to appease this problem while also being beneficial to the environment.

What to watch

Using renewable bio-materials is a long way from becoming used in commercial acrylic glass, but to be thinking of such things is a step in the right direction. Companies, such as DuPont, have already started thinking of the next generation applications for bio-materials. In September 2007, DuPont and Plantic Technologies created a joint venture - the development and sale of renewably sourced polymers.

Press Release

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