France – Carbios has officially opened and launched an industrial demonstration plant operating with its enzymatic recycling technology, C-ZYME, which was installed on the Cataroux site in Clermont-Ferrand.
The demonstration facility is the climax of the C-ZYME technology’s development. It will allow for the technical, environmental, and economic performance of the enzymatic PET recycling process to be validated, as well as the design of future industrial units. By the end of 2022, it will be possible to draw up complete engineering papers for the process (Process Design Package) for the construction and operation of a 40,000-tonne/year capacity reference unit, as well as future units to be run under licensing agreements.
A team of ten employees is now in charge of optimizing the operational parameters as well as producing the monomer batches. An initial hydrolysis has been completed successfully, verifying the process’s upscaling.
The C-ZYME recycling process employs an enzyme capable of depolymerizing PET (polyethylene terephthalate), which can be found in a wide range of plastic and textile products. Before being repolymerized into PET of equal quality to virgin PET obtained from petrochemicals, the depolymerized monomers are purified. Unlike past methods, Carbios’ discovery permits endless recycling of all types of PET trash (clear, colored, opaque, complicated polymers, polyester textiles), as well as the manufacturing of 100% recycled and 100% recyclable PET goods that retain their pristine quality throughout the process.