Versarien has announced that it has signed a collaboration with an undisclosed FTSE listed European manufacturer and supplier of co‑manufactured and private label consumer products for the household and personal care markets.
The collaboration will see both parties working on a number of projects involving the incorporation of Versarien's proprietary Nanene few layer graphene nano-platelets into polymer structures. In particular, the collaboration will aim to provide alternative solutions for packaging and the enhancement of existing products utilizing graphene-enhanced polymers.
Versarien and said collaboration partner, which reportedly has multiple manufacturing plants across Europe, will examine a number of formulations comprising existing polymeric packaging materials with graphene loading to assess the feasibility of these nanocomposites in packaging solutions. The key potential benefits of the use of graphene in these packaging systems is the increased performance of a moisture barrier, increased material strength and weight reduction, with a consequent reduction in plastic usage.
Initially the focus will be on the development and evaluation of rigid materials for blow molded bottles. In addition to the materials properties, the processing parameters will be evaluated to include cooling time, part shrinkage and recycling potential.
Neill Ricketts, CEO of Versarien, commented: "We are delighted to have signed this latest consumer goods collaboration. The incorporation of graphene into packaging materials has the potential to reduce plastic usage, increase the mechanical strength of packaging materials and improve their ability to be recycled. These are important goals for any consumer goods manufacturer as we all seek to reduce the impact of plastic packaging on the environment."