Toray Industries, Inc. has achieved a groundbreaking milestone by developing the world’s first 100% bio-based adipic acid, a crucial raw material for nylon 66 (polyamide 66), sourced from sugars derived from inedible biomass. This innovative feat is a result of Toray’s advanced synthesis technique, combining microbial fermentation technology and chemical purification technology with separation membranes.

  • What is Adipic acid?
    • Adipic acid is a dicarboxylic acid with the chemical formula (CH2)4(COOH)2. It is a white crystalline compound that is soluble in water and commonly used as a precursor for the production of nylon, specifically Nylon 6,6.
  • Adipic acid is a crucial raw material for nylon 66 (polyamide 66), a versatile material widely used in fibers, resins, and various applications. Toray’s bio-based adipic acid holds the potential to revolutionize the production of nylon 66, offering a more environmentally friendly alternative to conventional methods.
  • Toray’s achievement is attributed to a proprietary synthesis technique that combines microbial fermentation technology with chemical purification processes utilizing separation membranes. This innovative approach enables the conversion of sugars into adipic acid without generating greenhouse gases, contributing to efforts to combat global warming.

Some international businesses that produce based on bio-based Nylon

  • Invista: Global producer of nylon intermediates and fibers, investing in sustainable solutions with bio-based Nylon 66.
  • DSM: Multinational company developing bio-based materials, including bio-based adipic acid for Nylon 66 production.
  • Lanxess: Leading specialty chemicals company exploring bio-based alternatives, offering bio-based Nylon 66 with excellent performance.
  • Ascend Performance Materials: Global leader in specialty chemicals, producing bio-based adipic acid for sustainable Nylon 66.
  • Radici Group: Italian multinational specializing in chemicals, plastics, and fibers, developing bio-based Nylon 66 for various applications.

Global Market Outlook

The global market for bio-based adipic acid for eco-friendly Nylon 66 is poised for significant growth. Currently valued at USD 24.16 billion in 2022, the market is expected to expand at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 3.2% from 2023 to 2030. This growth is primarily driven by increasing demand and the development of novel applications for sustainable materials like bio-based Nylon 66.

India, the second-largest producer of PET and polyesters globally, holds significant potential for adopting and producing bio-based adipic acid for eco-friendly Nylon 66. With a robust biotechnology industry and abundant renewable carbon resources, India is well-positioned to capitalize on the growing demand for sustainable materials.

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