Econic wins £447,000 TSB grant


Econic wins £447k TSB grant: Econic Technologies has been granted £447,000 by the Technology Strategy Board for a Collaborative R&D project in Material Innovation for a Sustainable Economy. The two-year project is a collaboration between Econic Technologies, Imperial College London, Alfa Aesar (a Johnson Matthey Company) and a multinational polymer manufacturer. £277,000 of the grant will go towards Econic’s R&D expenditure, the remaining £170,000 will co-fund the collaborating participants’ UK-based R&D activities. The project, entitled Development and scale-up of novel catalysts for manufacturing polyols from CO2, will cost £642,000.

Utilising Carbon Dioxide as a chemical feedstock for polymers is an attractive proposition that scientists have investigated for 40 years. Whilst CO2 is an abundant natural product and a problem waste emission from many chemical and energy production processes, it is in a very low energy state and difficult to react. However Econic Technologies Ltd, an Imperial College London spin off, has developed a catalyst technology that enables copolymerisation of CO2 into polymers, with low energy requirements in a low pressure process. The potential application for the polymer products include furniture, building insulation, car parts and home appliances.

In a project, part funded by the Technology Strategy Board, Econic technologies have created and will lead a supply-chain consortium, that includes Alfa Aesar (a Johnson Matthey Company) to scale up catalyst production, a leading multinational polymer supplier to test and scale up the products, and world-class academic CO2-polymerisation experts from Imperial College London who will study novel catalysts and mechanisms. This research project will accelerate time to market enhancing UK catalyst sales revenues.

Author, Frank Norman