Cellulose Fibre Innovation of the Year 2021: Six new technologies or applications nominated

Cellulose Fibre Innovation of the Year 2021The innovation award “Cellulose Fibre Innovation of the Year 2021” will be granted to the innovative cellulose fibre industry for the development of new technologies and applications. All producers and inventors along the entire value chain from feedstock to the final product are invited to join the competition.

14 December 2020: 6 nominated products have been published!

From cellulose foam for packaging over plastic-free menstrual pads to EMI shielding materials, the nominated six applications can help build a sustainable economy.

For the first time ever, the innovation award “Cellulose Fibre Innovation of the Year” will be granted to the innovative cellulose fibre industry for the development of new technologies and applications. The election and award ceremony will take place at the 2nd International Conference on Cellulose Fibres (CCF), 2–3 February 2021 (online event). More information about the award can be found on https://www.cellulose-fibres.eu/award-application.

Cellulose fibres are the fastest growing fibre group in textiles, the largest investment sector in the bio-based economy, and a solution for avoiding microplastics. Producers and inventors along the entire value chain from feedstock to the final product joined the competition.

Out of twelve creative and promising inventions six have been finally nominated for the “Cellulose Fibre Innovation Award”. The selection was made by a jury consisting of nova institute employees and the advisory board of the conference. The audience will elect the three winners at the 2nd International Conference on Cellulose Fibres (https://www.cellulose-fibres.eu) which will be organized by nova-Institute on 2 February 2021.

The Outstanding “Top 6” Shortlisted ApplicantsThe Outstanding Top 6 Shortlisted Applicants

Bast Fibre Tech (Canada): Compostable fibre products from agricultural hemp and flax wastebast fibres 100 percent plant-based, intact natural fibres

BFTi produces compostable fibre products out of agricultural waste from hemp and flax processing. Using biogenic waste from the production of fast-growing crops instead of using wood or fossil resources is environmentally and economically more sustainable. Applications for the obtained fibre with moisture absorbing properties are for example toilet paper and recyclable, thus flushable cleaning wipes.
More information: http://www.bastfibretech.com

Empa – Laboratories for Materials Science and Technology (Switzerland): Cellulose nanofiber assisted biomimetic aerogels for EMI shieldingA sample of the electromagnetic shielding material made by Empa – a composite of cellulose nanofibres and silver nanowires. Image Empa

Empa researchers combined cellulose-based aerogels with silver nanowires. The flexible composite blocks high-frequency electromagnetic radiation, which is traditionally achieved by using inflexible metal sheets or metallized foils. This ultra-light electromagnetic shielding material can be used to protect electronic components or the transmission of signals from electromagnetic fields caused by neighbouring electronic devices or motors.
More information: http://www.empa.ch/web/s604/cellulose-emi-shielding

Kelheim Fibres (Germany): Plastic-free absorbent hygiene productsWith plant-based and biodegradable fibers for plastic-free future

Kelheim Fibres developed plant-based fibre solutions for absorbent hygiene products. These comprise speciality fibres for the single layers of AHP with different functionalities: a hydrophobized fibre for the topsheet, a trilobal fibre for the acquisition/distribution layer and a hollow fibre for the absorbent core. These biodegradable and sustainably manufactured fibres enable the replacement of plastic fibres without a loss of performance. The material has the potential to be used also for the production of textiles, such as reusable menstrual underwear. First commercial end-products using Kelheim’s fibre solutions are developed and intended to be launched in 2021.
More information: http://www.kelheim-fibres.com

Metsä Spring (Finland): Textile fibre based on paper grade pulpMetsä Spring -paper-grade pulp to textile fibre production process

The Metsä Group is developing a more energy-efficient process based on a new solvent family to produce Man-Made Cellulosic Fibre (MMCF). Using ionic liquids, the MMCF can be produced from paper-grade pulp, avoiding the use of energy-intensive dissolving pulp. MMCF, such as viscose, lyocell or Modal®, are important fibres for the textile industry.
More information: http://www.metsaspring.com/project/textile-fibre-from-paper-grade-pulp/

OrganicDisposables (Poland): FibriTech – a porous and light material from cellulose for soilless farmingFibriTech is a new process for the production of porous and light material from cellulose and lignocellulose

FibriTech is a new process for the production of porous and light material from cellulose and lignocellulose. A mixture of fibres can be used, including waste and recycled fibres. This extends the possible feedstock for usable materials and reduces waste. Desired properties are derived by the application of bio-additives. The resulting material can be used as a natural soilless substrate with favourable properties for both plants and soilless farming systems. Other possible applications are thermal and sound insulators and air filters.
More information: http://www.fibri.tech

Stora Enso (Sweden): Cellulose Foam by Stora Enso – a lightweight cellulose-based foam for packagingCellulose Foam by Stora Enso​

“Cellulose Foam by Stora Enso” is a lightweight foam material made from cellulose. It is designed as an eco-friendly alternative for fossil-based packaging and cushioning materials such as expanded polystyrene or polyethylene. The foam has comparable shock-absorbing and insulating properties whilst being bio-based, biodegradable, compostable and recyclable in ordinary paper recycling.
More information: http://www.cellutech.se/cellulose-foam.html

2nd International Conference on Cellulose Fibre, 2–3 February 2020 (online event)

The “2nd International Conference on Cellulose Fibres” will cover the entire value chain from lignocellulosic feedstock, dissolving pulp, cellulose fibres – such as rayon, viscose, Modal(R), lyocell or new developments – to a wide range of applications, woven textiles (clothing) and non-wovens (wipes and technical applications). All these sectors have significantly gained momentum over the last few years.
The final programme is now available at: https://www.cellulose-fibres.eu/programme
You can register to the online conference here: https://www.cellulose-fibres.eu/registration

Kelheim Fibres (DE), Lenzing (AT) and Levaco Chemicals (DE) are supporting the conference as Gold Sponsors. Bronze Sponsor is NC Partnering (FI). Further information on our attractive sponsoring packages can be found at https://www.cellulose-fibres.eu/sponsoring – also the sponsoring of the Innovation Award is still possible.

nova-institute also wants to acknowledge the following associations and research institutions that actively participate as conference partners: BCNP Consultants (DE), C.A.R.M.E.N. (DE), CLIB – Cluster Industrial Biotechnology (DE), Fachagentur Nachwachsende Rohstoffe (FNR) (DE), Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) (DE), IBB – Industrielle Biotechnologie Bayern Netzwerk (DE), ITA – RWTH Aachen (DE), Russian Textile Association (RU), Textile Exchange (DE/US), The Fiber Year (CH) and World BioEconomy Forum (FI).

Next stage: At the conference (2 February 2021)

In a short 10-minute presentation, each of the six companies will introduce their innovation on the first day of the conference (2 February 2021). Following the presentations, the audience will choose the three winners, who will be presented with their awards at the innovation award ceremony (likewise on 2 February 2021, in the evening).

In addition, the “Top 6” will present their innovations in a shared exhibition space provided by the nova-Institute during the whole of the conference. Furthermore, there is the option to book your own exhibition space.

All winners and their innovations will be highlighted in the subsequent media coverage.
Please note that it is obligatory for the chosen “Top 6” candidates to present their product at the conference on 2 February 2021. Each “Top 6” candidate will get one free 2-day ticket and further tickets at a discount rate.