KAST

Norner takes a role in our sustainable future by extending capability and competence in Biopolymers. 

Our high focus brings substantial value and increased speed to customer’s bioplastics projects.  

We offer

  • Hands on experience with biopolymers from development, processing and testing.
  • In depth technology and market studies on BIO materials for international FMCG companies.
  • Scientists with direct experience in biopolymers. 
  • A technology center where the various aspects of a polymer can be tested like: polymer. characterisation, compounding, processing, performance testing on standard specimens or on our s packaging prototypes.
  • Broad industrial expertise in plastics from polymer properties to application performance.

Client studies and Research programmes 

  • Norner performs strategic technical studies of the suitability of bio sources for polymers.
  • Norner evaluates bio-polymerisation in a cost/complexity/benefit scenario.
  • Bio polymers as neat solutions or as composites are studied versus end applications.
  • Conversion to end products and documentation of end use performance of biopolymer.
  • Development of new and enhanced properties and applications for biopolymers.

Examples of our biopolymer work

  • Catalytic polymerisation, modification, processing and testing of polymers from CO2.
  • Processing and testing of commercially available bioplastics like starch based, PLA and PHA types in film and moulding lines
  • Patent and literature surveys on the converting of various raw materials to bioplastics
  • Chemical modifications of starch to make it plastic 
  • Organising Bioplastic seminars with excellent feedback on quality and content.

International conference on plastics, circular economy, technology, business strategies and innovations for increased recycling.

 

We invite you to take part in the FuturePack conference in Oslo on September 10th 2019 at 09-16.00 followed by a conference dinner. 

Would you like to know how leading companies and institutions work to develop better recycling and material utilization? We have invited international companies in the plastics packaging value chain including raw materials, converters, brand owners, recyclers and technology to share their developments. 

Amoung our speakers are EREMA, Clariant, Orkla and Tomra. There will be presentations from the FuturePack project also by Østfoldforskning, Nofima and Norner. A full program will be available soon. 

 

 

All over the Nordic and Europe there are several projects and activities on the plastics circular economy and material recycling. FuturePack is a large Norwegian Research program into the circular economy of plastics packaging and we work both on mechanical and chemical recycling of plastics.

The project organises an annual conference and the first, in 2018, was a success. The focus of the conference will be on circular plastic economy and mechanical recycling. We want the conference to be technically oriented with a view on how we can close the gap in volumes and quality to reach the high EU targets.

Norner has developed an extensive competence in Biopolymers and Green Chemistry.

Biopolymers can be defined in several ways and a typical way of classifying them is categorising them into biobased raw materials and biodegradability. Some materials can be both produced from bio-based raw materials and be bio-degradable like polylactic acid (PLA). Others can be from bio-sourced raw materials like BioPE, but are not biodegradable.

More recent polymers from biosources include PEF and PHA, and important technical progress has been made. Both PEF and PHA have interesting properties for several applications and it can be expected more news related to these in the years to come.

The initiative on PEF by Coca Cola, Danone and others is an example of this. Another example is the non-competing industries cooperating within biopolymer development such as the recent announced cooperation between Heinz (with access to bio waste from its ketchup operation) and Ford vehicle group.

 

Through several bench-mark studies, Norner has explored that Biopolymers can offer a lot of potentially sustainable and also cost efficient products like:

  • Side- and waste-products from the forestry industry
  • Wood Polymer Composites
  • BioPE
  • PHA is a “new” polymer produced by living organisms 

Norner continues to perform application studies and the expertise build-up of biopolymers with the purpose of supporting application development and implementation in e.g. the FMCG market. Bio-materials have been tested on our application machinery such as blown film and injection moulding following a thorough investigation and bench mark of article properties disclosing both interesting and surprising features. 

Norner is also doing extensive research in another category of sustainable polymers based on CO2. These materials may also become bio based. Norner has developed extensive know-how and IPR in the field.

  

Plastics from CO2

The global interest in making polymers from carbon dioxide (CO2) is huge due to the utilisation of a waste product that is harming the climate.

Focus areas

Norner has during the last years been active in the research of polymerisation of CO2 to form polymer. The development has resulted in a basic design of a new continuous process, including a simplified purification step,

The further plan is to find the right consortium to build a small scale pilot for production of polycarbonates and further to commercialize the technology. The projects have focused on several critical aspects including additivation, catalyst, process efficiency and application testing. Norner has a team of experts as well as polymerization facilities in-house for further developing the technology.

Technologies utilising CO2

  • The interest in making polymers from CO2 is huge due to the utilisation of a waste product that is harming the climate, as well as the substitution of petro based raw materials which are more costly than CO2. Such polymers substitute 35-45% of the hydrocarbon based raw material with CO2.
  • Norner has developed a position as a recognized player in the emerging «Carbon Capture and Use» industry. In this regard, Norner has developed technology since 2008, building up knowhow within this field as well developing a number of technology concepts supported by patent applications.
  • Poly(propylene carbonate), PPC, is produced by the copolymerisation between the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide and propylene oxide in the presence of a catalyst. PPC is an environmentally friendly material that needs to be considered for much broader applications than the current limited commercial use. New interesting properties can be achieved with Poly(cyclohexane carbonate) PCHC due to its Tg above 100 0C.

Norner provides environmental benefits utilising greenhouse gas carbon dioxide (CO2) as raw material

PPC with increased thermal stability¹

  • The thermal properties of PPC poses a challenge as the polymer has a low glass transition temperature (softening) as well as is prone to degradation especially when containing catalyst
    residues. In a recent scientific article, Carlos Barreto Soler (PhD) discusses ways to overcome these hurdles, by Norner’s own purification and stabilisation technology.
  • In fact, PPC may be purified without the use of organic solvents, and the thermal properties may be tailored to be dramatically increased compared to today’s scientific and industrial benchmarking PPC materials. Norner’s novel procedure renders the PPC thermally stable at 200 °C for ca 60 min, thus expanding the processing window for PPC.

Blends of PPC with PP or PE

  • PPC is a material with significant opportunities, but with some limitations. One limitation that is well known is its use in conventional thermoplastic applications due to a low glass transition temperature, Tg, and a low decomposition temperature. One way to overcome this limitation, and speed up the time to market for PPC, is by the use of blends and multilayered solutions with conventional thermoplastic resins (PE and PP).
  • Blends with other biobased polymers and nanomodified polycarbonates have also shown interesting properties
    Injection Moulding.
  • The injection molding should apply the same temperature recommendations as given for the compounding step above. Blends and injection moulded items of PPC and polyolefins with up to at least 50% content of PPC can be made. The stiffness can be modified with the content of inherent plasticizer, propylene carbonate (PC).

Blow moulding

  • PPC has superior melt strength compared to conventional polyolefins, as illustrated. This is an advantage with respect to parison and blow moulding performance. The barrel, die and melt temperature should hold the same temperature recommendations as given for the compounding step above.

For more information contact:

1. Novel solventless purification of poly(propylene carbonate). Tailoring the composition and thermal properties of PPC. Carlos Barreto, Eddy Hansen, Siw Fredriksen, Polymer Degradation and Stability, Volume 97, Issue 6.June 2012.

 Norner polymerise your innovations

We can all contribute to fight marine littering

Norner supports and cooperate with S/Y Fairwinds on «Arctic Expedition 2018» sailing from the Bahamas to Bermuda - Nova Scotia – Newfoundland - Labrador – Greenland - Iceland and back to Norway. The Arctic Expedition will trawl for macro- and microplastics over a distance more than 5000 nautical miles.

  • The start of the expedition is in the North Atlantic Gyre, where high accumulation of plastic debris previously has been reported. Marine litter contamination in coastal waters and large stretches of Open Ocean has been investigated intensively, but there are still many blind spots. These are mostly open ocean and remote regions, where access is seasonally restricted and research is expensive and challenging, such as the Polar Regions. S/Y Fairwinds will therefore explore the Arctic waters, which is significantly less investigated, but also known to be contaminated by plastic pollution and microplastics.
  • The region is highly important for domestic and international fishing industry. We have recently seen investigations showing significant amounts of microplastics trapped inside the sea ice floating in the Arctic.  It is therefore of high relevance to extend the fact base and knowledge of macro- and microplastics in the seas where the Gulfstream transports water into to the polar region.
  • S/Y Fairwinds is a 53 feet steel ketch, originally built for the German Naval Academy and offshore sailing. The owner and captain of Fairwinds is Fredrik Molin, who has been sailing full time on the oceans around the world the last 5 years. On board this expedition participates Simen Wingerei, who had his apprenticeship and Journeyman’s Certificate at Norner. He will be responsible for the trawling of macro and microplastics, which will be done systematically and after methods developed by the 5Gyres Institute. The collected samples will be analyzed by Norner after the expedition.
  • The main objective for Norner with this expedition is to improve the quality of documentation of marine littering and contribute to increased understanding, awareness, and how we can deal with the issue of pollution of plastics in our precious sea. Norner has cutting-edge knowledge within plastics and polymers and is highly engaged in serious issues of marine littering. Arctic Expedition is one of our actions to increase the effort and contribution to solve the challenges the world is facing due to plastics being resources astray.
  • Norner will have a special focus on plastic granules, also being called «nurdles» or «mairmaid’s tears», where pellet loss at plastic processing facilities currently only has been estimated.  
  • The plastic pellets are small (3-4 mm, ~30 mg) and look similar to organisms that marine animals and birds are eating. If they are not passed through or repelled by the digestive system, they, like other litter items, may accumulate and cause malnutrition and starvation. While consumers are responsible for the proper disposal of used products, the plastics industry must ensure containment of the products it handles, namely the plastic pellets.

Operation Clean Sweep

Operation Clean Sweep® is an international programme designed to prevent the loss of plastic granules (pellets) during handling by the various entities in the plastics industry and their release into the aquatic environment. Today, not all plastic companies participate in the program. Results from the Arctic Expedition may encourage more companies to join. Norner wants to contribute to this increase in corporate stewardship

Flexible packaging equipment and machines

Solutions for flexible plastic packaging for food, consumer and industrial products.

We have high focus on innovation and technical solutions in processing and products of plastic materials for flexible packaging.

  • Flexible plastic packaging for food, consumer and industrial products is a large and important business. A wide range of films, laminates and packaging applications require specific physical properties for different demands.
  • These properties are influenced by the choice of material type and grade, material recipes and additives, processing, lamination and printing.
  • It becomes increasingly important to understand these relationships vs. requirements for the packers, end users and legislation.
  • We have the competence, equipment and capability required to support the film industry and be a technology partner in material, process and product development, troubleshooting and support.

Norner services

Material evaluation and selection

  • Industrial scale film extrusion trials, product and material testing, international test standards, raw material quality, selection strategy and harmonisation, material recycling.

Product and process development

  • Operational excellence, onsite technical support, product development, improvement and optimisation, harmonisation of additives and masterbatches and small scale compounding.

Norner offer

  • Quality improvement
  • Product and failure investigations
  • Tailor made seminars and training
  • IPR strategy and assistance
  • REACH and EU food directives

Norner confidence

  • Norner is determined to develop and deliver sustainable solutions to any packaging challenges by focusing on all steps in the value chain.
  • Our broad approach allows us to influence packaging development starting from polymer type, design and manufacturing process via the additives to the actual processing and packaging application. This is ensured by the wide range of facilities and competencies in Norner.
  • Our lab and facilities operate under ISO 9001 and a high quality internal control system.

Our insight

Food and consumer packaging

  • Gas barrier fresh food and vacuum packaging, deep freeze, moisture barrier dry food packs, various prefabricated bags, stand up pouches, laminated films, tissue wraps, collation shrink films, labels, printing.

Industrial packaging

  • Shipping sacks, pallet shrink and stretch hoods, liners, compressed packs, security pouches, bubble films, stretch wrap.

Oriented films

  • Mono- and biaxially oriented films.

IPR issues

  • Patenting process, applications, documentation and freedom to operate investigations.

Industrial network

  • Extensive network of industrial partners in the film and flexible packaging industry, machinery and material suppliers enables improved and faster developments.

Our facilities

W&H 3 layer coex line

  • Extruders 50/60/50mm barrier screw
  • LD/LLD Die 200mm with 1,2 and 2,5mm die gaps
  • HDPE Die 160mm with 1,5mm die gap
  • Air Cooling IBC and Chilled air capability
  • Corona treater
  • Double winder 1200mm

Collin lab scale mono line

Hosokawa Alpine MDO line

  • Line for converting blown and cast films by machine direction oriantation.
  • 2m wide and 200m/min capacity.
  • Corona treater

Film test centre

  • Comprehensive lab with modern test equipment and high reproducibility for film properties like: tensile, impact, tear resistance, puncture resistance, elasticity, gas barrier, optical, sealing, hot-tack, creep resistance, coefficient of friction, shrinkage, shrink force.

Other material testing

  • Volatiles, emissions and migration determination rheology and advanced molecular structure light and electron microscopy laboratory additives & composition analysis.
Recyclability and quality testing

Wide range of pilot lines, material and application testing and chemical analysis.

Norner focus on sustainable solutions and innovations. We deliver trustworthy project cooperation and product support.

 

Our recycling services

  • Tests and evaluation of waste streams
  • Post consumer waste (PCW) to post consumer recyclate (PCR) trials
  • Processing trials including particle/gels removal (melt filtration)
  • Odour and volatile reduction technology
  • Application trials in state-of-the art pilots
  • Article and material performance

Polymer characterization

  • Polymer testing and molecular characterization
  • Volatile components and odour
  • Migration testing
  • Head space, unknown components
  • Gels and impurities
  • Visual inspection

Application processing

  • Injection moulding
    • C&C, thin wall, general injection moulding
  • Film extrusion
    • Blown film, cast film, sheet
  • Bottles HIC (Household Industrial Chemicals)
  • Thermoforming
    • Appliances, packaging

Application performance tests

  • Wide range of standard tests according to ISO or ASTM
  • Specialised end-use tests (e.g. cap hinge performance)

  

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