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Approaches to increase the proportion of renewable raw materials in rubber

Renewable raw materials are becoming increasingly important. In the case of rubber, we are in the comfortable position of having always worked with a natural product here - natural rubber. In the early days of the rubber industry, natural rubber was the only plastic available. Because of its exceptional properties (high level of inherent strength, high absorption capacity for fillers, etc.), natural rubber still holds a stable, high share of the rubber market today.

Cellulose fibers are a completely different renewable raw material for elastomers. Fibers can partially substitute active fillers such as carbon black and silica. Short-cut fibers can be aligned in the compound under certain conditions and thus provide anisotropic stiffness in the product. The outstanding properties of such formulations are well known. The respective aspect ratio determines the processability and the resulting properties. By means of a special process at TITK, cellulose fibers can be converted into an application-friendly granulate.