Polyolefins such as polyethylene and polypropylene pervade all aspects of modern life, but they have low affinity for paints, adhesives and coatings, while polyolefin composites have an inability to successfully blend in components such as fibres and particulate fillers. Due to this lack of compatibility, plastic waste comprising polyolefins mixed with other plastics has severely compromised mechanical properties so that the majority of mixed plastic waste is being incinerated or dumped instead of being reused.
Interface Polymers has developed additive technology which can improve the cost and performance characteristics of polyolefins, and also create a new type of recyclable polymer packaging.
Interface Polymers’ Polarfin® copolymer additive technology modifies the surface properties of the most commonly used plastics enabling adhesion between otherwise incompatible materials. The invention enables product innovation opportunities such as novel plastic alloys and composites, with tailored physical properties and cost/performance improvements in existing applications. Most recently, their new Polarfin-Blue polymer alloys will make it possible to manufacture new mixed plastic products which can be recycled multiple times by existing separation processes.
Since its establishment in 2016 Interface Polymers has secured grants of over £1m and investment of £2m, and is working with major producers of plastic packaging and synthetic fibres for industrial and domestic applications.