|Fraunhofer IVV works on biobased paper coatings|
Germany’s Fraunhofer IVV has been working to develop and combine the best-performing biobased paper coatings, with other organisations in the research consortium testing their impact on recyclability.
The BiPaRe (BioPaperRecycling) project aims to reconcile the, sometimes conflicting, priorities of a coating’s barrier properties and its recyclability, and so to increase the market potential of biobased options.
Kerstin Müller, who works on biobased materials development at Fraunhofer IVV, says her team has already tested several coatings of different material types on paper. “Water vapour, oxygen and grease barriers were evaluated, as well as recyclability, including a filtrate analysis to evaluate possible contamination to the water system,” she tells IAPRI. “The best-performing coatings will now be selected to create combined barriers on paper, and different application techniques and coating thicknesses will be compared.”
One objective is to generate a database for product developers, including assessments of functionality, process capability and recyclability.
In terms of potential contamination as part of the recycling process, the project partners intend to develop a generally-applicable laboratory test method to determine the ‘interference potential of redispersible coating components in paper production’. This test, being worked on by the Papiertechnische Stiftung (PTS – The Paper Technology Institute), will supplement existing test methods.
Another aim of BiPaRe is to develop sample packaging concepts for different products using the coatings on paper, combining functionality and recyclability.
The project, which is backed by the German Ministry for the Economy and Energy, began in 2021, and runs until next year.