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CroCO2PETs: Cross-linkable CO2-polyether polyols



Climate protection by means of carbon capture and utilization (CCU) relies on CO2-utilizing, energy saving, and low carbon footprint chemistry, which has the potential to substitute established mass products by means of CO2-containing compounds. Polyether polyols (PETs) are such a mass intermediate. First CO2-containing PETs are about to enter the market.

It is important to note that the reductions of the global warming impact result from

- the capture of CO2 e.g. from flue gas, and chemical fixation of the respective CO2
- the substitution of energy intensive raw materials by means of low-energy materials, and
- novel, energy efficient processes.

These three mechanisms lead to a reduction of up to 3 kg CO2-equivalent GHG emissions by the incorporation of only one kg CO2 into CO2-PET. Taking into account the global polyol production these new polymers have the potential to reduce GHG emissions by an order of magnitude of 1 million tons per year. Moreover, the utilization of CO2 as raw material vitalizes an alternative carbon source, which can significantly reduce fossil depletion by chemical production.

Cross-linkable CO2-PETs have the potential to considerably extend the product portfolio of CO2-polyols. The Climate-KIC innovation project ‘Dream Products’ has successfully been taking first decisive steps towards the production of cross-linkable PETs at 50 kg scale. To make these compounds real ‘drop-in solutions’, a matrix of material properties and specifications of existing products has yet to be met. Four product groups are in focus covering a broad spectrum of elastomer applications. Frequently refined assessment of technical feasibilities, life cycles, economic potentials and entrepreneurial leverages facilitate decision-making on implementation of results and market launches. 

Laufzeit: 01.05.2015 – 30.04.2018

Website: CroCO2PETs (Climate-KIC enCO2re)

Project partners

Covestro Deutschland AG
Technische Universität Berlin
RWTH Aachen University (IKV, LTT, ITA, CAT)


eit Climate-KIC

Research associates


Buchner, G. A.; Rudolph, M.; Norwig, J.; Marker, V.; Gürtler, C.; Schomäcker, R. Kinetic Investigation of Polyurethane Rubber Formation from CO2‐Containing Polyols. Chem. Ing. Tech. 2020, 92 (3), 199–208. https://doi.org/10.1002/cite.201900103

Buchner, G. A.; Wulfes, N.; Schomäcker, R. Techno-Economic Assessment of CO2-Containing Polyurethane Rubbers. J. CO2 Util. 2020, 36, 153–168. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jcou.2019.11.010

Zimmermann, A. W.; Wunderlich, J.; Müller, L.; Buchner, G. A.; Marxen, A.; Michailos, S.; Armstrong, K.; Naims, H.; McCord, S.; Styring, P.; Schomäcker, R. Techno-Economic Assessment Guidelines for CO2 Utilization. Front. Energy Res. 2020, 8:5, 1–23. https://doi.org/10.3389/fenrg.2020.00005

Buchner, G. A.; Stepputat, K. J.; Zimmermann, A. W.; Schomäcker, R. Specifying Technology Readiness Levels for the Chemical Industry. Ind. Eng. Chem. Res. 2019, 58 (17), 6957–6969. https://doi.org/10.1021/acs.iecr.8b05693

Buchner, G. A.; Zimmermann, A. W.; Hohgräve, A. E.; Schomäcker, R. Techno-Economic Assessment Framework for the Chemical Industry - Based on Technology Readiness Levels. Ind. Eng. Chem. Res. 2018, 57 (25), 8502–8517. https://doi.org/10.1021/acs.iecr.8b01248

Buchner, G. A.; Wunderlich, J.; Schomäcker, R. (EST-2912) Technology Readiness Levels Guiding Cost Estimation in the Chemical Industry. In AACE International Transactions; Morgantown, WV, 2018; p EST.2912.1-23.

Buchner, G. A.; Schomäcker, R.; Meys, R.; Bardow, A. Guiding Innovation with Integrated Life-Cycle Assessment (LCA) and Techno-Economic Assessment (TEA) - the Case of CO2-Containing Polyurethane Elastomers, EIT Climate-KIC EnCO2re Report; 2018. http://enco2re.climate-kic.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/04/TEA-LCA_integration_report_2018.pdf

Zimmermann, A. W.; Wunderlich, J.; Buchner, G. A.; Müller, L.; Armstrong, K.; Michailos, S.; Marxen, A.; Naims, H.; Styring, P.; Schomäcker, R.; et al. Techno-Economic Assessment & Life Cycle Assessment Guidelines for CO2 Utilization; CO2Chem Media and Publishing Ltd, 2018. https://doi.org/10.3998/2027.42/145436

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