Polylactic acid (PLA)

Cutting edge production for biopolymer

PLA is a bio-based, bio-compostable and 100% recyclable biopolymer produced from renewable feedstock like sugar beet, sugar cane, wheat or maize. Due to technological developments and optimizations of the processes, we offer skid mounted lactide to PLA plants or integrated solutions from sugars to PLA thanks to our PLAnet(TM) alliance.

PLA plant at Synbra with 5 000 t/a capacity, designed and delivered by Sulzer
Main benefits

The main advantages of this state-of-the-art PLA technology are:

  • Highly efficient polymerization process using Sulzer Mixing Reactors (SMRTM) systems
  • Fast product transitions between different PLA grades due to short residence time
  • Operational flexibility to produce different PLA grades with different molecular weights
  • Compact-sized plants
  • Straight-forward scalability to bigger plant sizes of up to 100 kt/a
  • Precise reaction temperature control thanks to the equipment geometry and inserts allowing an efficient energy dissipation
  • Perfect melt mixing thanks to the unique geometry of the reactors
  • Low maintenance costs due to installation of mainly static equipment
Main applications
    • Thermoforming: packaging for food industry, glasses, straws
    • Fibers and non-wovens: t-shirts, blankets, carpets
    • Film: single use gloves, bags, agricultural films
    • Injection Molding: computer cases, cutlery, car parts
    • Bottles: detergent or beverage
    • Rotomolding: car and machine parts
    • 3D printing: filament for 3D printers
Together with its partners Futerro and TechnipFMC, a seamless technology starting from sugars. Such biopolymer is available on commodity markets, such as packaging, disposable and single use objects, fibers and more tailored on the Clients’ needs. Please find out more about what PLAnetTM can offer you by clicking here.
Biodegradable PLA
PLA

Biodegradable PLA

Biodegradable polymers based on renewable feedstock have started to replace conventional polymers produced from fossil fuel. Sulzer offers a complete plant solution for the PLA production. Lactide monomer is polymerized in a continuous, fully integrated process using Sulzer's proprietary SMRTM technology and equipment. Sulzer, teams up also with Futerro and TechnipFMC to offer a sugar-to-PLA plants.


Contact our Polymer team below