Senbis Polymer Innovations is developing several applications based on degradable biopolymers. Within this project developments and field tests have been completed for the applications Trimmerline, Dolley Rope (in Dutch pluis) and horticulture twine.
Trimmerlines are used on a wide scale to cut grass, both by households as by professional users. Conventional trimmerlines are made of Polyamide (PA) which is a plastic that is not degradable. Senbis is is developing and testing a trimmerline that is fully made of degradable biopolymers. This polymers are shaped in to a monofilament and need to have a high performance to make sure the grass is cut well and the line does not break at the high speeds that are used. Very challenging but not unrealistic according to Senbis. The field tests are performed by Senbis but also in cooperation with professional users in the Netherlands. Soon you will have a much more sustainable way to cut your grass!
Dolley Ropes (in Dutch Pluis) are used by the fishing industry to protect the fishing nets when fishing at the bottom of the see. The dolley ropes are made of conventional plastic (polypropylene) and do not degrade in water. This leads to plastics floating around that cause damage to marine life and birds. Many dolley ropes are found at the beaches of the North Sea. Senbis Polymer Innovations is developing and testing dolley ropes based on degradable biopolymers. The tests are being doing done in cooperation with fisherman to complete field tests on the North Sea and at the ‘Innovatiecentrum voor Visserij’ in Stellendam the Netherlands, where Sea fishing conditions are simulated and the test can be closely monitored. https://visserij-innovatiecentrum.nl/
Horticulture twines are used in glass houses to grow vegetable plants like tomatoes, paprika’ s, peppers and cucumbers. These twines (ropes) make sure the plant grows upwards and assures sufficient light exposure and also assure that the vegetables don't fall on the floor. Conventionally a polypropylene (PP) twine is being used. At the end of the harvest the farmer has to dispose the plants. Due to the presence of PP twine, the plant can’t be composted but is considered a 'grey waste' stream. Senbis is developing and testing a twine that is made of PLA (Polylacticacid) which can be fully compost. PLA is made out of biomass. With this bio twine the farmer can supply more sustainable vegetables and also safe cost as composting is cheaper then grey waste disposal. Big field tests are being executed by Senbis in cooperation with several companies that are growing tomatoes and paprika’ s.
These developments are supported by a subsidy provided by the SNN which includes EFRO funding provided by the European Union (EU).