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Chementator: Plastics from CO2?  

By Gerald Ondrey |

Researchers from the Organic Chemistry Dept. at Newcastle University (U.K.; edlinks.chemengonline.com/7373-544) have developed aluminium (salen) complexes that exhibit "exceptional" activity for catalyzing the synthesis of cyclic carbonates from CO2 and epoxides. Cyclic carbonates are widely used for the production of solvents, paint strippers, biodegradable packaging as well as for the manufacturing of a new class of anti-knocking agents in gasoline. However, current methods to react CO2 with epoxides require high temperatures and pressures. The new catalyst enables the reaction to be performed at room temperature and pressure, as demonstrated in the laboratory. The research team is working to optimize the efficiency, after which it plans to scale up to a pilot plant.  Click here for a full pdf version of the Chementator Section
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