Success Story Dream Production
Within Dream Production the industrial process for the production of CO2-based polyols was developed. Our contribution to Dream Production included:
The chemistry behind Dream Production
- Identification of the right type of catalyst out of several catalyst classes:
- Proof that the optimum CO2-content is a balance between flexibility of the polymer chain and economy
- Quantification of the inhibiting effect of CO2 and starter
The reaction engineering behind Dream Production
- Definition of the appropriate process window
- Proof of principle for the high-pressure process
- Proof that reaction in a back-mixed reactor leads to the best products
The material aspects behind Dream Production
- Incorporation of functional groups by terpolymerisation
- Follow-up chemistry to induce function
- Introduction of alternative cross-linking methods allowing to apply CO2-based polyols also in other fields of application
Development of the chemistry was accompanied by active marketing to the industrial partner and inducing the necessary change management
The Science behind Dream Production
A dream comes true: Tailor-made polyethercarbonate polyols are synthesised from propylene oxide and CO2.
Molecular weight and functionality of these polyethercarbonate polyols are controlled by the use of an appropriate alcohol starter enabling innovative applications as a polymer building block. The feasibility of using tailored polyethercarbonate polyols in the production of polyurethanes is demonstrated as a prime example for a novel CO2 utilization with industrial potential.
Life Cycle Assessment
Utilization of CO2 as alternative carbon feedstock for polyols is motivated from the potential to reduce fossil resource depletion and greenhouse gas emissions. A life cycle assessment on the production of CO2-based polyethercarbonate polyols analyses the scenario of a real industrial pilot plant. The cradle-to-gate system boundaries include polyol production and all upstream processes such as provision of energy and feedstock.
The Team @ CAT Catalytic Center
The project team has received many awards for the success story.
Dream Production has received wide attention in the public.
- Grüner Strom aus brauner Kohle (Hyperraum TV, 2011)