Carbios, a green chemistry company focused on reinventing the lifecycle of plastic and textile polymers, has secured a patent from the US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) on its process for recycling polyethylene terephthalate (PET) from plastic waste using enzymatic technology.
The patent granting (US 10,124,512) recognizes Carbios for its invention of a method for recycling PET from a mixture of plastic waste products using enzymes, to specifically depolymerize PET into its basic monomers.
The monomers are then capable of being transformed back into usable polymers for the manufacturing of new plastic products like bottles and packaging.
In November 2013, Carbios has filed the patent, which is claimed to be the first granted patent in the US applied to the innovative PET plastic recycling method. The company said the patent protects its innovation through 2033.
The company claims that apart from the acceptance of present patent, it holds 98 titles representing 29 patent families across the world, out of which six protect in full its proprietary method of biorecycling and five of which are related to PET degrading enzymes.
Carbios CEO Jean-Claude Lumaret said: “This patent strengthens our competitive position for the recycling of PET and it is gratifying to have the United States Patent and Trademark Office recognize the innovative nature of our proprietary technology.”
The company revealed that North America significantly contributes for the global PET market by producing 7% and consuming 21% of the world’s PET.
Carbios claims that the US acceptance of patent for its process for PET recycling from plastic waste using enzymatic technology would further strength its intellectual property rights and expansion in the market.
Furthermore, its biological process for depolymerizing PET develops a cost-efficient circular economy for plastic recycling without the need for extensive sorting generally required by conventional thermo-mechanical or chemical methods.
The company has showed that its biorecycling technology based on the use of bioengineered enzymes allows conversion of PET plastic waste back into its original components at a rate of 97% in only 16 hours.
In addition it also showed that virgin PET can be made with 100% rPTA through its advanced biorecycling process, using various post-consumer PET plastic bottles such as clear, colored, opaque, complex.