Hua Zhong Easton, Mike Essink en Laura Rodriguez Comas, three students of MOLMAT, have developed a new approach to enhancing the biodegradation process of polymers by blending them with other materials.
Using specific polymer blends and composites, the team significantly increased the rate at which the materials broke down in natural environments.
The research is significant as it addresses the growing issue of plastic pollution and its impact on the environment. Traditional methods for addressing plastic waste have often focused on recycling or disposal, but these methods have their limitations. By accelerating biodegradation, this new approach offers a promising solution for reducing plastic waste and mitigating its impact on the environment.
The team's findings have been published in a leading scientific journal Macromol. Chem. Phys and have received attention from industry leaders and policymakers. The researchers are now working to further develop and test their approach in various environments and with various polymers.