Friday, June 13, 2008

Mazda Motor Corporation started its Bioplastic Project in cooperation with Hiroshima University

Mazda Motor Corporation (TYO:7261) has started its Bioplastic Project in collaboration with Hiroshima University. The goal of this project is to develop durable plastics from waste wood and other plant materials. The company expects to use such plastics in its cars by 2013. The plastics would be used in dashboards, and bumpers. reports:

In process similar to that used to make second generation biofuel, waste plant material such as wood shavings is turned into ethanol which will then be converted into ethylene and polypropylene.

Mazda claims this process is carbon neutral and, unlike alternative materials made from soy or cornstarch, does not remove food resource.

The car company has already developed a bioplastic which it uses to build the cabin of its hydrogen power Premacy RE Hybrids. The company is planning to mass produce the material and make it commercially viable.

Along with oil, the price of still has also risen globally. Last month,
Toyota Motor Corporation (TYO:7203) and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Ltd. (TYO:7011)
agreed buy steel from Nippon Steel Corporation (TYO:5401) at higher price. At such conditions, it is natural that automakers will be looking for suitable alternatives of steel. Carbon fiber, a special kind of plastic which is now widely used in fighter planes in Europe. Now, it is automobiles turn. Let’s see what Mazda can do with its bioplastic.

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