A Durable Plastic Made From Cellulose And Water

Zeoform can be made from plants or reclaimed waste and molded into any shape. The Australia-based company wants to license its technology in hopes that others can improve on it.

What's the Latest Development?


An Australian company has created a material, Zeoform, that resembles plastic -- and has been made into a number of forms, including furniture and eyeglass frames -- but is composed entirely of cellulose and water. The cellulose comes either from plants such as hemp or flax or from recycled paper or textile waste. They are "ground down with water, dried, then formed into fine pellets or sheets, and can be sprayed or formed" into shapes. The grinding and drying process is what makes Zeoform so durable, says CEO Alf Wheeler: "The fibers make a lot of contact with each other. Everywhere that happens, there is an opportunity for a hydrogen bond. That is where the materials science is."

What's the Big Idea?

Many different groups are on the hunt for plastics or plastic-like materials that leave little or no environmental footprint. Rather than become a manufacturing leader, the makers of Zeoform want to license their technology to others so that they can help improve on it. Wheeler points to potential job-creating opportunities: "There's a lot of paper-making towns with lots of unemployed people...All they need is some intellectual property and a relatively cheap retrofit to their mill, and they can put people back to work." The company has launched an Indiegogo campaign to raise funds for a "center of excellence showcase" to be held next year. 

Photo Credit: Shutterstock.com

Read it at FastCompany/Co.Exist

Understand your own mind and goals via bullet journaling

Journaling can help you materialize your ambitions.

Videos
  • Organizing your thoughts can help you plan and achieve goals that might otherwise seen unobtainable.
  • The Bullet Journal method, in particular, can reduce clutter in your life by helping you visualize your future.
  • One way to view your journal might be less of a narrative and more of a timeline of decisions.
Keep reading Show less

How to split the USA into two countries: Red and Blue

Progressive America would be half as big, but twice as populated as its conservative twin.

Image: Dicken Schrader
Strange Maps
  • America's two political tribes have consolidated into 'red' and 'blue' nations, with seemingly irreconcilable differences.
  • Perhaps the best way to stop the infighting is to go for a divorce and give the two nations a country each
  • Based on the UN's partition plan for Israel/Palestine, this proposal provides territorial contiguity and sea access to both 'red' and 'blue' America
Keep reading Show less

Car culture and suburban sprawl create rifts in society, claims study

New research links urban planning and political polarization.

Pixabay
Politics & Current Affairs
  • Canadian researchers find that excessive reliance on cars changes political views.
  • Decades of car-centric urban planning normalized unsustainable lifestyles.
  • People who prefer personal comfort elect politicians who represent such views.
Keep reading Show less