Recycled car interiors – New technique can capture or reuse CO2 as a chemical source for the production of sustainable plastic 16-11-2023
Recycled car interiors
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Recycled car interiors are the new chic luxury
Carmakers are lining their electric vehicles with trash — literally — and hoping sparse, eco-friendly cabins will redefine luxury for a new generation of buyers.
Why it matters: Turning recycled denim, fishing nets and plastic bottles — or even mushroom roots — into automotive cockpits may help the industry reduce its carbon footprint.
- Plus, it’s what today’s premium customers prefer in place of plush leather or polished wood, carmakers say.
- “Sustainability is luxury,” says Anders Karrberg, head of global sustainability at Volvo Cars. “It speaks to a younger generation.”
Driving the news: Volvo’s newest electric vehicle (EV), the compact EX30 SUV, will test that theory. Recycled car interiors
- The Swedish luxury brand is known for its clean and simple Scandinavian design, with light oak interiors that are functional yet beautiful.
- The EX30, starting at $34,950, puts a whole different spin on that theme, blending an array of recycled and renewable materials into an austere cabin.
- The bare-bones interior features seat fabric sewn from denim scraps, a dashboard woven with thread from flax and linseed plants, and speckled door accents made from ground-up vinyl window frames.
- The EX30 has the smallest carbon footprint of any Volvo, the company says.
The big picture: Some automakers have used products like soy or sugar cane fibers in inconspicuous areas for years, like in wiring harnesses under the hood or in the headliner fabric on the inside roof of the car. Recycled car interiors
- But there’s a new urgency to use more recyclable and renewable materials as automakers face looming targets to be “carbon neutral” by 2050 or sooner.
- They won’t hit those goals simply by adding more EVs to their lineups, since evidence shows EVs aren’t driven as much as gasoline-powered cars.
- To dramatically reduce their carbon footprint, automakers need to decrease greenhouse gas emissions across their operations, including in manufacturing and logistics.
Meanwhile: Like Volvo, Kia is integrating a lot more recycled or plant-based components into its lineup — starting with the EV9, a family-friendly SUV hitting dealerships by the end of the year. Recycled car interiors
- The EV9 uses 10 “must-have sustainable materials,” including bio-paint made from rapeseed oil on the door switches, recycled polyethylene terephthalate plastic (PET) in the seats and other surfaces, and recycled fishing nets in the carpet.
- The South Korean carmaker is taking the trend even further with newly revealed concept cars like the EV3, EV4 and EV5.
- For example, it’s replacing plastic molding with soft-but-strong plant-based parts “grown” from mycelium, the white hairlike fiber from mushroom roots.
What’s next: Kia eventually wants to develop grown materials using a process called bio-fabrication.
- “Using mycelium enables us to mimic the processes we see in nature and leverage it to design more sustainable solutions — the material can be grown in any shape you want using a mold,” Marília Biill, who heads up color, materials and fabric design at Kia, notes in a press release. Recycled car interiors
What to watch: Will these recycled components and biomaterials hold up during the wear and tear of daily driving?
- Complaints have been rolling in about the durability of a new recycled fabric Apple is using in place of leather for its iPhones and watches.
What they’re saying: “The industry’s been making interiors out of plastic for 70 years, so the supply chain is pretty good at it,” says Stephen Kosowski, manager of long-range strategy and planning for Kia America.
- “To engineer new parts that are as durable, and have the same look and feel and that will last as long as plastic, is not easy.”
- “I think we’ve cracked the code on durability,” he said, but the cost of developing sustainable materials remains a challenge. Recycled car interiors
Technip Energies Creates Reju – An Innovative Polyester Textile Regeneration Company
Building on its technology partnership with IBM and Under Armour, Technip Energies announces the launch of Reju, an innovative company focused on creating new solutions at scale for the vast amount of plastic fiber in textiles that goes unrecycled and ends up as waste. Former Under Armour CEO and apparel industry veteran Patrik Frisk is heading the new company along with Alain Poincheval, COO, a senior executive with Technip Energies.
Technip Energies (PARIS: TE) (ISIN:NL0014559478) announces the creation of Reju, a new company focused on PET (Polyethylene terephthalate) recycling (rPET) of textiles that will leverage the innovative technology co-developed in joint-venture with IBM and Under Armour as well as Technip Energies’ global engineering and technology integration expertise. Recycled car interiors
Reju will address the fast-growing market of global rPET whose demand from the textile market is expected to grow up to 20 Mtpa by 2033, driven by industry pledges and targets on recycling, regulation and consumer awareness of the need to reduce plastic waste.
Technip Energies, IBM and Under Armour have been working together since 2021 in a joint venture to bring VolCat, an IBM technology for rejuvenating waste PET packaging and polyester, to an industrial scale. VolCat allows the selective breakdown of polymers which IBM first applied to technologies like semiconductor lithography and microelectronics packaging. Reju intends to use this technology to address hard-to-recycle polyester garments and PET packaging lost to the waste stream today. With this technology, acting as a molecular sorter, PET could be regenerated infinitely.
The groundbreaking ceremony for Reju’s demonstration plant took place in September in Technip Energies Frankfurt Research Center with the facility expected to come on stream in 2024. Recycled car interiors
Arnaud Pieton, CEO of Technip Energies , commented: “Globally, l ess than 1% of PET textiles waste is recycled today . This means that most textiles end up as waste in landfills when they could be repeatedly reused in new clothes. What has been holding the world back in textile circularity is not a lack of demand for textile recycling but the lack of a solution that makes recycling of textiles economical on an industrial scale. For the first time in this domain, a unique scalable technology is directly associated with a scalability expert like Technip Energies. Reju will deliver the promise of economical textile recycling, and we are proud to extend our role as an active agent of circularity.”
Arvind Krishna, CEO of IBM , said: “The health of our planet has never been more pressing, and the amount of fashion apparel and textiles that end up in landfills today is enormous. Recycled car interiors
The good news is that technology can help solve this challenge. IBM is proud to provide its VolCat technology to support Reju in advancing sustainable textile recycling.
We look forward to collaborating with Technip Energies and Reju to champion initiatives like these that place sustainability at the heart of the global textile industry.”
The LYCRA Company launches new LYCRA® FiT400™ fiber
The LYCRA Company, a global leader in developing innovative and sustainable fiber and technology solutions for the apparel and personal care industries, announced today the launch of new LYCRA® FiT400™ fiber for knits.
The company’s latest EcoMade offering is a unique bicomponent fiber engineered to optimize the performance and comfort of knits. It delivers a durable soft hand-feel, low shrinkage and high uniformity to fabrics. LYCRA® FiT400™ fiber is made from 60% recycled PET and 14.4% from bio-derived resources and is GRS certified.
The fiber includes two different polyester polymers, which together create a helical crimp, providing permanent stretch and recovery properties, as well as breathability, cooling comfort and chlorine resistance to fabrics. Recycled car interiors
LYCRA® FiT400™ fiber helps set the stage for circularity, a key priority for The LYCRA Company. In controlled tests under specific conditions, this fiber was recycled back into new polyester fibers, thereby demonstrating the technical feasibility of this process.*
“We developed LYCRA® FiT400™ fiber to deliver in-demand performance benefits and an enhanced soft hand to the knit fabric category,” said Steve Stewart, chief brand and innovation officer at The LYCRA Company. “This innovation also meets customer and consumer expectations for more sustainable solutions since it is made with recycled and bio-derived materials.”
LYCRA® FiT400™ fiber will be advertised to the trade. The “It’s Time for Better” campaign aims to disrupt the activewear, athleisure and swimwear categories with the message that consumers and the planet deserve better—better-functioning garments offering reduced environmental impact. Recycled car interiors
Fabrics and garments powered by LYCRA® FiT400™ fiber are eligible for LYCRA® XTRA LIFE™ or COOLMAX® EcoMade brand hangtags if they meet specific brand quality standards. Both brands enjoy high levels of consumer brand awareness worldwide.
To learn more about LYCRA® FiT400™ fiber for knits, visit lycra.com.
*LYCRA® FiT400™ fiber is compatible with established polyester chemical recycling processes.
In multiple tests, LYCRA® FiT400™ fiber components were blended with standard polyester components and recycled back into new polyester fibers with comparable performance as standard recycled polyester fibers. Recycled car interiors
Recycled car interiors