K. Knauer, E. Chen, G. Beckham
National Renewable Energy Laboratory,
Keywords: plastics, recycling, upcycling, redesign, recyclable, degradable, microplastics
Summary:Bio-Optimized Technologies to keep Thermoplastics out of Landfills and the Environment (BOTTLE™) is a U.S. Department of Energy multi-organization consortium focused on developing new upcycling strategies for today's plastics and redesigning tomorrow’s plastic to be recyclable-by-design (RBD). The primary focus of the BOTTLE Redesign Task is to create tomorrow’s plastics to be RBD, economically viable, energy efficient, and derived from bio-based sources and today’s waste plastics. Working hand-in-hand with the modeling and analysis teams, we are actively developing a computational pipeline to predict RBD polymers with target thermal and mechanical properties. Using this "predictive redesign" approach, our goal is to develop RBD polymers that can replace today’s non-recyclable or hard-to-recycle commodity plastics. This talk will cover our flagship projects in prediction of RBD polymers, designer RBD Polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHAs), and circular polymers with both full chemical circularity and high performance.