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Moving CO2 from molecule to material

DITF will assess the production suitability for the technology developed by Fairbrics.

10th March 2023

Innovation in Textiles
 |  Denkendorf, Germany

Clothing/​Footwear, Sustainable

As part of the €22 million Threading CO2 project announced this January, the German Institute of Textile and Fibre Research (DITF) in Denkendorf is working to upscale monoethylene glycol (MEG) produced from CO2 as a polyester component.

The Threading CO2 project which brings together 13 partners from seven countries is being coordinated by Paris-headquartered Fairbrics SAS, which has developed the technology for converting the CO2 emissions into MEG.

The funds will be used in part to upscale Fairbrics technology, first in a pilot line of 100 kg per day by 2024 and later, by 2026, to a one-ton per day demo plant.

At its labaoratories in Germany, DITF Denkendorf is working to move the project ‘from molecule to material’ by synthesising polyesters, spinning them into fibres and further processing them to test whether the new polyester’s performance and quality is comparable to conventional polyester.

“This is a completely new approach, because  not only is the release of CO2 into the atmosphere directly prevented, it also contributes to adding value,” says Simon König, deputy head of the competence centre for chemical fibres and nonwovens at DITF.

Project partners Faurecia and Les Tissages de Charlieu will subsequently work to process the fibres and textiles into car seats and clothing so that the quality can also be assessed in the end product. The subsequent recyclability of the products will also be tested at the DITF. In addition, security marking is to be developed for the CO2-based polyester to protect it from product piracy.

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