HydroGraph PET Test Results Show Improved Plastic Performance

Graphene

HydroGraph Clean Power Inc. one of five certified graphene manufacturers in the world, today announced that positive test results from its research in combining its proprietary graphene with polyethylene terephthalate (PET) — the plastic resin commonly used to make water and soda bottles, clamshell food packaging and clothing fibers – improves plastic’s performance and could reduce material in plastic bottles by 10% to 15%.

Many major corporations have committed to decreasing the use of disposable plastics in their products, aligning with consumer preferences and emerging legislation. However, the global economy may face challenges in completely eliminating plastic, leading companies to explore innovative methods to improve the lifespan of plastics. Testing was done to assess if HydroGraph’s 99.8% pure carbon content fractal graphene, FGA-1, would enhance the mechanical properties of PET. Tensile testing showed an increased elasticity of 22% at 0.5% graphene weight, increased strength at breaking by 114% from virgin PET, and increased strength at yield of 13% to 15%.

“Right now, we’re looking at a potential 10% to 15% reduction in material for bottles,” said Randall Zajac, HydroGraph’s director of business development, resins and composites. “Our next steps will be to prove other benefits, like recyclability and barrier properties. We’re also going to explore if our graphene will boost the strength of recycled material, which would let manufacturers reuse a higher percentage of recycled PET in the material mix.”

By having 10% to 15% less material in the bottles overall, manufacturers will also save on energy from not having to heat and cool the material. “The savings there are considerable,” said Zajac.

Virgin PET pellets from China average US$1,000 per ton[1], and it takes about 20 to 25 grams to make one 500 ml bottle[2] at a cost of 1 cent each. The United States produces 50 billion bottles just for water[3] annually at a cost of US$500 million in imported PET pellets. With graphene reducing PET usage by 15%, the total savings would be US$75 million.

“The global PET market is a huge opportunity for us,” said Stuart Jara, HydroGraph’s CEO. “International annual production is approximately 87 million tons, and based on these results, we project having a 1% penetration, amounting to US $174 million.”

Testing was done at the Graphene Engineering Innovation Centre (GEIC) at the University of Manchester, which specializes in the rapid development and scale-up of graphene and other 2D materials applications. HydroGraph has been regularly featured as a key component in Greater Manchester’s US$200 million investment zone. HydroGraph’s graphene is produced using its patented Hyperion controlled-explosion system at its Manhattan, Kan., facility.

“We are pleased to have collaborated with HydroGraph on this project undertaken at the GEIC involving graphene in PET,” said James Baker, CEO of Graphene@Manchester. “HydroGraph’s leadership and vision in this opportunity has been instrumental, and we are delighted to support their efforts every step of the way. The successful outcomes achieved underlines the efficacy of our partnership and also demonstrates the capabilities of our team here at GEIC. As HydroGraph continues to scale up this process and pursue FDA approval, we are confident that this again demonstrates the potential for graphene in enhancing a range of applications.”

The global graphene market was valued at US$337 million in 2022 and is projected to grow to US$2,957.9 million by 2030.[4]

[1] https://www.made-in-china.com/products-search/hot-china-products/Virgin_Pet_Pellets_Price.html

[2] https://phys.org/news/2009-03-energy-bottle.html

[3] https://www.earthday.org/fact-sheet-single-use-plastics/

[4] https://www.fortunebusinessinsights.com/graphene-market-102930

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