PHA Production Capacity

New Company Lux-on Will Produce PHA from CO2

PRESS RELEASE - Bio-on and Hera create Lux-on to produce bioplastic from CO2.
  • Lux-on created by Bio-on, alongside Gruppo Hera, to develop a revolutionary technology to produce biopolymers from CO2 (carbon dioxide).
  • Following 2 years of research by Bio-on scientists working in Italy and USA, the new technology uses CO2 freely available in the atmosphere as a carbon source to produce 100% natural and biodegradable bioplastic.
  • CO2 is added to the other “raw materials” already used to make Bio-on bioplastic: sugar beet and sugar cane molasses, fruit and potato waste, carbohydrates, glycerol and waste frying oil. Using CO2 will also help reduce the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.
  • Lux-on’s bioplastic production will rely solely on renewable solar energy and, thanks to a hydrogen energy management system, will run 24/7

BOLOGNA, 10 December 2018 – Bio-on and Gruppo Hera, one of Italy’s largest multi-utility providers, have reached an agreement to take 90% and 10% shares respectively (with the possibility of Hera increasing its share to 49.9%) in LUX-ON, the new company founded by Bio-on aiming to revolutionise the production of PHAs biopolymers using CO2 captured from the atmosphere and producing energy without using fossil fuels.

The new technology developed by Bio-on envisages using carbon dioxide as a zero cost “raw material”, in addition to those already used to produce Bio-on bioplastic: sugar beet and sugar cane molasses, fruit and potato waste, carbohydrates, glycerol and waste frying oil. Using CO2 will also help reduce the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.

The laboratories and first plant of the new Lux-on project will be built by the end of 2019 close to the Bio-on Plants industrial facility at Castel San Pietro Terme (Bologna). It will be designed entirely by Bio-on technicians in collaboration with Hera, with carbon capture plants and a production facility using renewable solar energy.

The development of the technology will be aided by the fact that many of the principles and equipment used in the standard technology can also be used in Lux-on’s new production systems. This is why the development and pre-industrial phase will be much faster than usual.

The plant will occupy an area of 1,500 m2, 600 m2 of which is covered, and will have a flexible production capacity that is rapidly expandable. The electric energy used in Lux-on’s innovative production process will be produced by photovoltaic systems which, aside from directly powering production, will also provide storable energy for nocturnal power (24/7 production).

For energy storage, partnerships will be entered into with international experts in hydrogen (H) technology. Hydrogen, a nonpolluting gas, will be produced from solar energy, stored and then converted to electric energy to power the plant when the solar panels are not running, i.e. at night or when light levels are poor.

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