Agricultural Research Service (ARS) scientists have developed an improved, environmentally-friendly process for making epoxy fatty acids, esters, and polyols, which can be used as plasticizers, surfactants, coatings, and lubricants. Plasticizers are additives that improve the flexibility and stability of plastics. ARS’s process uses an enzyme from seeds to replace strong acids typically used to convert fatty acids and esters to plasticizers. Acid disposal is costly for producers, and can also cause equipment erosion over time. Additionally, the polyols prepared from the plasticizers have unique chemical structures that are difficult to obtain from chemically produced plasticizers. Approximately one million tons of plasticizers are produced each year. Only 10 percent of this market is made from renewable fats and oils, the majority are prepared from petroleum feed stocks. This technology could expand the market for plasticizers from renewable resources. The plastics industry and companies producing industrial materials such as surfactants, greases, coatings and lubricants could use this invention. The next step in commercialization of this process would require the participation of an industrial partner for product testing.
Please refer to S.N. 11/231,093 (Docket #0115.04), “Methods of Selectively Expoxidizing Carbon-Carbon Double Bonds,” which was filed on September 20, 2005. Foreign rights are available.
Also, please refer to USPN 6,852,315 (Docket #0229.02), “Epoxidation of Carbon-Carbon Double Bond with Membrane Bound Peroxygenase,” which issued on February 8, 2005. Foreign rights are not available.
George J. Piazza Thomas A. Foglia
Fats, Oils and Animal Coproducts (Same as first inventor)
Wyndmoor, PA 19038 (215) 233-6480 / Fax: (215) 233-6795
(215) 233-6511 / Fax: (215) 233-6795 email@example.com