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PlastiSea - Novel enhanced bioplastics from sustainable processing of seaweed


PlastiSea meeting at Frøya

The consortium was finally able to meet again, this time at Frøya in Norway where SES have their seaweed farm. In addition to a fruitful discussion on project results and plans, the partners enjoyed a boat trip to see the young seaweed which will near quadruple in size over the next two months. Finally, the partners had the opportunity to observe the natural kelp forest at close hand, with a snorkelling session in the refreshing waters of the Norwegian fjords.

As the project enters its final year, we are excited to test pilot scale production of bioplastic prototypes and publish a vast body of research on brown algae processing and the structural-functional properties of algal biopolymers in bioplastics. The consortium plans to reconvene in Denmark in the late Fall, and before that time aims to host a workshop on seaweed-based materials. For further updates, stay tuned on the web site and do not hesitate to contact the PlastiSea partners!

Plastisea, showcased at Transfiere 2022 Innovation Summit

The world is getting its agenda back, and so the possibility of participating in international events. This is the case of the Transfiere Forum. Plastisea has attended to the 2022 edition, within the stand of Aitiip Technology Center, which has participated as a member of the Spanish Federation of Technology Centers (FEDIT).Transfiere is one of the essential events for the innovation ecosystem, as it brings together the main players in the technical-business environment. Each year, Transfiere revalidates its position as an ideal initiative to establish contacts, create synergies and serve as a perfect place to showcase the latest advances in products or services.

The Plastisea team has been able to exchange impressions with different agents of the innovation ecosystem about the evolution of biobased packaging as one of the main strategies for making effective a more sustainable industry. Transfiere has counted in this edition with the participation of more than 600 companies, entities and public administrations. Among them, the Ministry of Science and Innovation, some of its dependent bodies -such as the Spanish Foundation for Science and Technology (FECYT), the State Research Agency (AEI) and the CDTI-, or the Spanish National Research Council (CSIC).

All of them have built a synergistic and learning environment, thanks to the multiple thematic panels focused on European funding models for R&D&I, or the new paradigms of entrepreneurship, digital transformation and transfer of scientific knowledge.

AITIIP Centro Tecnológico
AITIIP Centro Tecnológico

Meet the partners: AITIIP Centro Tecnológico

AITIIP is responsible for pilot-scale manufacture and characterization of the seaweed bioplastics developed in PlastiSea. Watch the video below for a short virtual tour of their state-of-the-art facilities in Zaragoza, Spain.

The 6th SIG Seaweed conference

SINTEF and SES attended the SIG Seaweed conference in Trondheim, Norway on the 25th and 26th of November and presented results related to PlastiSea and other ongoing seaweed research. This year's conference was a collaboration with the Norwegian Seaweed Biorefinery Platform, which is a national knowledge platform on the processing and utilisation of seaweed to assist seaweed-based industries in Norway.

Øystein and Katharina from SINTEF presented seasonal variations in the composition of cultivated seaweed, and how new knowledge on the structure and function of seaweed biopolymers are vital for developing new applications across multiple industry segments.

Meet the partners: Maddalen Ayalo Cereza (AAU)

Maddalen is a PhD candidate from AAU-DCEA doing her PhD along with the PlastiSea project. Her PhD is about Life Cycle Assessment of emerging technologies for the Blue Bioeconomy, focusing on brown-seaweed-based plastic production. She assesses this emerging technology from an ex-ante consequential life cycle assessment perspective. In her PhD, she studies the global suppliers of brown seaweed that are expected to increase in the future, the entire life cycle assessment of the seaweed-based plastic and the upscaling of this technology.

If this emerging technology is implemented in the future and the demand for this seaweed-based plastic increases, it is necessary knowing the brown seaweed suppliers that are increasing and will be able to respond to a future increase in demand. In consequential LCA these suppliers are called “marginal suppliers”. The Life cycle assessment will show the environmental impacts of this seaweed-based plastic including different scenarios about its end of life. Finally, the scaling-up will help to obtain a more accurate estimation of the environmental impact of the seaweed-based plastic on an industrial scale and upgrades the comparability of the new product with commercially available products.

PlastiSea Barcelona / Zaragoza meeting

After a long time of "online-only" the consortium was thrilled to finally meet in person in Spain, in the end of October. The first part of the meeting was held at Parc Científic de Barcelona, where B'ZEOS also have their laboratory. For the second day we made the trip to Zaragoza and AITIIP's pilot production facilities. As the project is moving into the first pilot scale production trials, it was most useful for the consortium to get their eyes and hands on formulation prototypes and the equipment that will be used for large-scale production of packaging films based on cultivated brown algae.

If possible, the consortium will reconvene in Norway during spring to get a first-hand look at the seaweed cultivation operation at Frøya as well as the laboratory facilities for biomass processing.  

Web site update and social media

As the PlastiSea project has gathered much interest from researchers, industries and the public, we will increase our efforts to update our stakeholders on new scientific results, product developments, and overall status of the project. Furthermore, visitors of the web site will get to know the project partners and their work related to PlastiSea.

While we are already(!) past half-way in the project, the web site will be updated more frequently and we have also established a twitter account @PlastiSea to better communicate from the project and link up with stakeholders.

Stay tuned!

Other news related to the project (in norwegian)

Gründeren ble servert organisk, økologisk drink med plastsugerør – da kom ideen til en ny type plast