Facts About Biodegradable Plastic

1. What is degradable plastic?

Degradable plastic is a large concept. It is a period of time and contains one or more steps under specified environmental conditions, resulting in significant changes in the chemical structure of the material, loss of certain properties (such as integrity, molecular mass, structure or mechanical strength) and/or broken plastic.

2. What is biodegradable plastic?

Biodegradable plastics are plastics that can be decomposed by the action of living organisms, usually microbes, into water, carbon dioxide, and biomass. Biodegradable plastics are commonly produced with renewable raw materials, micro-organisms, petrochemicals, or combinations of all three.

3. What is a biodegradable material?

Biodegradable materials include biodegradable natural polymer materials such as cellulose, starch, paper, etc., as well as biodegradable plastics obtained by bio-synthesis or chemical synthesis.

Biodegradable plastic refers to mineralized inorganic salt and new biomass (such as microbial dead bodies, etc.) whose degradation is mainly caused by the action of microorganisms in nature under natural conditions such as soil and/or sand, and/or specific conditions such as composting conditions or anaerobic digestion or in aqueous culture fluids, which will eventually be completely degraded into carbon dioxide (CO2) or/and methane (CH4), water (H2O) and of the elements contained therein.

It should be noted that every kind of biodegradable material, including paper, requires certain environmental conditions for its degradation. If it does not have the degradation conditions, especially the living conditions of microorganisms, its degradation will be very slow; at the same time, not every kind of biodegradable materials can quickly degrade under any environmental conditions. Therefore, it is recommended that we determine whether a material is biodegradable through studying the environmental conditions around it and analyzing the structure of the material itself.

4. Different types of biodegradable plastics

According to what type of raw material is used, biodegradable plastic can be divided into four categories. The first category is a plastic that is directly processed from natural materials. On the market at present, biodegradable plastic, which is produced by natural polymers mainly include thermoplastic starch, biocellulose and polysaccharides etc.; The second category is a polymer obtained by microbial fermentation and chemical synthesis, such as polylactic acid (PLA), etc.; The third category is a polymer, which is directly synthesized by microorganism materials, such as polyhydroxyalkanoate (PHA), etc.; The fourth category is a biodegradable plastic obtained by blending the before-mentioned materials or by adding other chemical synthetics.

Post time: Mar-08-2021