What we do
Polaris Renewables is developing proprietary technology for the production of fully renewable non-isocyanate polyurethanes (NIPUs) for use in foams, coatings, and adhesives with footwear, fabrics and outdoor gear chosen as the initial target markets.
What goes into it
Formulations include both thermoplastics and thermosets. This technology eliminates the use of toxic petrochemical isocyanates and provides significant sustainability advantages. The cost of production is comparable to commercial polyurethanes and manufacturing should require little or no changes to existing facilities.
Like conventional lipid-based polyurethanes, Polaris’s NIPUs start by epoxidating unsaturated fatty acids, but rather than opening the epoxide rings to form polyols, Polaris reacts the epoxide groups with CO2 to form cyclic carbonates. These can be reacted with bio-based amines to form hydroxypolyurethanes.
Generating New Ideas. Solving Big Problems
We have shown that polyunsaturated lipids from linseed or algae can react with kinetics within the range needed for commercial production, yielding polymers with a variety of properties. The cost of production is comparable to commercial polyurethanes and manufacturing should require little or no changes to existing facilities. We are exploring the potential for biodegradation and recycling of our NIPUs..