Succinic acid can be reacted with different alcohols to produce polyesters. Polybutylene succinate, or PBS, is one such polyester. PBS is a biodegradable polymer made by reacting succinic acid with 1,4-butanediol. The market for this biopolymer is currently limited by capacity and price, and the fact that it has traditionally been made with petroleum-derived succinic acid and 1,4-butanediol. Applications range from single use in food service ware, including cutlery, cups and lids, agricultural mulching film and compostable bags.
BioAmber bio-based succinic acid enables PBS to be lower cost and partially renewable, and upon commercialization, we expect our bio-based 1,4-butanediol will enable PBS to be 100% bio-based. We believe that this will drive PBS market growth beyond current applications to include paper coating, food packaging, fibers and non-wovens, and durable applications including automotive interiors, consumer goods and household appliances.
BioAmber is the exclusive supplier of bio-based succinic acid to Mitsubishi Chemical, used to produce partially bio-based PBS. PBS can be used in combination with other biopolymers such as PLA, PHA and poly (3-hydroxy-butyrateco-3-hydroxyvalerate), or PHBV, and with petrochemical polymers such as polypropylene, polystyrene and polycarbonate. These combinations, known as blends, combine the properties of the polymers that are being mixed and can lead to specific properties and performance that are being sought by customers.
PBS composites are compounds in which PBS is filled with fibers (such as natural fibers, glass fibers or carbon fibers) or fillers (such as wood flour or starch). Blends and composites can alter properties such as stiffness, mechanical resistance and density, and lead to more cost-effective solutions. Potential applications include automotive interiors, non-wovens (such as disposal hygiene products), construction materials, consumer goods and appliances.
Enabling a new generation of bioplasticsFrom disposable to durable applications, manufacturers are looking for the combination of resin performance coupled with an improved environmental profile.