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Laurel BioComposite has completed construction of its new 12,000 sq. ft. manufacturing facility and is ramping up phase one production for Bio-Res PE.
According to Laurel, the bio-material is a high-performance, cost-effective replacement for traditional petroleum-based resins in a variety of manufacturing processes for plastics. Laurel is taking delivery of equipment that includes an ENTEK E-Max 53mm twin screw extruder and an Amtek Microwave system to support phase one production expected to start in April 2013.
“Phase One will deliver an annual commercial production rate of about 7 million pounds,” says Tim Bearnes, CEO of Laurel BioComposite. “Phase two will take Bio-Res PE production to 48 million pounds and is projected for completion late in the fourth quarter of this year.”
The company explains that it uses distillers’ grains as feed stock for its proprietary process. A by-product of ethanol plants, this renewable feedstock is readily available and easy to transport and store, making Bio-Res suited for large volume production. Bio-Res PE sequesters carbon-dioxide and does not use toxic compounds during processing.
Laurel says that Bio-Res PE is able to economically raise the renewable or “green” content of plastic products by as much as 40 percent. The bio-material is available in a pellet form which blends easily with polyethylene, polypropylene, polylactic acid and polyhydroxyalkanoates matrices. The product has been tested to replace 20 to 40 percent of the neat resin reducing traditional petroleum-based resins in a variety of manufacturing processes for plastics by as much as 40 percent. Superior flow characteristics make the material unique in the bio additives market for thermoplastics. Bio-Res PE is especially suited for single use products as well as applications for a variety of industries including shipping, lawn and garden, agriculture and automotive.
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