The revolution of furan-based plastics is here!

Get to know the CBE-Funded project FURIOUS. 

PVC tubes

In an era when environmental concerns have reached a crescendo, the search for eco-friendly alternatives to traditional plastics has intensified. We need to look for promising alternatives to fossil-based plastics while preserving the characteristics that conventional plastics have: lightweight, durability, affordable prices, among other characteristics. 

The FURIOUS project will help in finding the way towards new bio-based polymers that can be the constituent of revolutionary bio-based plastics. 

Which is the goal of the FURIOUS project?

The main goal of the FURIOUS project is to enrich the portfolio of bio-based innovative mono-material solutions, all set to replace the conventional, often environmentally harmful, plastics that have dominated our world for decades. It strives to develop versatile polymers that meet the exacting demands of three critical applications where current bioplastics fall short, and traditional plastics still reign supreme. 

Where will the FURIOUS solutions be applied?

Within FURIOUS, we will test and develop new biopolymers for the following applications: 

  1. Biomedical and Electronic Packaging
    1. In sectors where sterilization and high barrier properties are non-negotiable, such as biomedical and electronics packaging, FURIOUS polymers aim to be the answer.
  2. Automotive Industry
    1. The automotive sector demands polymers capable of withstanding the relentless assault of UV weathering while also exhibiting intrinsic antibacterial properties. FURIOUS materials will be designed to outperform the fossil-based counterparts.
  3. Underwater Devices
    1. Underwater applications require polymers that possess biodegradability in seawater. FURIOUS steps up to this unique challenge. 

The FURIOUS approach: merging innovation and sustainability

To achieve these goals, the FURIOUS project relies on a strategic blend of well-established synthetic methods and cutting-edge, environmentally friendly processes. The emphasis will be on green processes and low lifecycle environmental impact while also taking into account cost-effectiveness of the developed materials. The FURIOUS team is actively working on ensuring their real-world applicability. These novel polymers are being assessed for processability, which is an essential feature for market entry. This evaluation covers a spectrum of manufacturing techniques, from traditional methods like injection molding and extrusion to more innovative ones, including electrospinning, 3D printing, and stereolithography. This broad compatibility ensures that FURIOUS materials can be integrated into various industries seamlessly. 

Recyclability and Compostability: taking into account the EoL since the beginning

In a world increasingly focused on recycling, FURIOUS is ensuring that its furan-based polymers won't end up as waste in landfills or oceans. These polymers are designed with intrinsic recyclability in mind, supporting both mechanical recycling and novel enzymatic recycling strategies. Additionally, in the case of packaging, compostability is being actively evaluated. For underwater sensors, the biodegradability of the material in a marine environment is a crucial factor in their design. 

Creating a furan-tastic future with FURIOUS

The FURIOUS project is not just about developing innovative materials; it's about changing the way we think about plastics and their role in our world. The groundbreaking results of the FURIOUS project will contribute to the development of a Sustainability-by-design database, which will be used to assess and predict the performance of novel materials. This, in turn, will lead to a set of guidelines for end-use applications, further promoting sustainable practices and reducing our reliance on traditional plastics. 

We can't wait to see what revolutionary change FURIOUS brings to the plastics industry. Join us!