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Toray commercializes nylon grade with 100% bio-based synthetic polymers

| By Mary Bailey

Toray Industries, Inc. (Tokyo, Japan) announced that it has developed a nylon 510 (N510) fiber that incorporates 100% biobased synthetic polymer content as defined under section 3.1.5 of ISO 16620-1: 2015, the international standard for the biobased content of plastics.  Ecodear N510, will be the first 100% plant-based nylon fiber in Toray’s Ecodear lineup. 

The company has created diverse potential applications for Ecodear N510 as a sustainable offering for high-end markets.  While primarily for sports and outdoor fabrics they extend to lightweights, cut-and-sew fabrics through innerwear lace materials. 

Toray plans to begin Ecodear N510 textiles sales for fall/winter 2023. Initial production volume to be 200,000 m by the end of March 2023 and growing to 600,00 0m in March 2026. Ecodear N510 fiber sales are targeted for fall/winter 2024 with an expectation of a monthly supply of 3 metric tons monthly in the year ending March 2024. 

Nylon originated in the United States. In the early 1950s, Toray became the first Japanese company to manufacture nylon. Apparel and other wide-ranging applications over the years have reflected nylon’s excellent flexibility, durability, wrinkle resistance, and washability. Nylon is typically made from petroleum. In light of rising demand in recent years for environment-conscious products to address such global environmental issues as resource depletion and global warming and address a growing awareness of the need to build a sustainable society. 

Toray already offers partially plant-based polyester, nylon, and other polymers. It developed Ecodear N510 by polymerizing Sebacic acid from castor-oil plant and Pentamethylenediamine from corn and spinning. Unlike other wholly plant-based nylons, Ecodear N510 has a high melting point and outstanding dimensional stability. It is as strong and heat-resistant as Nylon 6. Companies can thus create products that are sustainable without compromising performance. 

Toray looks to combine various proprietary technologies to drive further fiber advances. These would include making fibers thinner and lighter or adding functionality by changing cross-sectional shapes. The company will develop an array of apparel and other materials applications to help building a sustainable society.