Green chemicals and technologies for the wood-to-textile value chain.


The GRETE project will tackle the challenges caused by increased global demand for sustainable textile fibres by offering new breakthroughs in the wood-to-textile value chain. The substitution of cotton by man-made cellulose fibres is also necessary because of sustainability issues. Currently the raw material base for the production of man-made cellulose fibres from wood is limited, as only highly processed dissolving grade pulps are used industrially. GRETE will introduce technologies by which paper grade pulps from softwood and hardwood sources can be used as raw material for man-made textile fibres. GRETE will also offer safe and sustainable solvent systems for the production of regenerated cellulose fibres, instead of the present ones which are based on toxic or explosive chemicals. The developed novel solvents are ionic liquids (IL’s), which will be non-toxic, recyclable and synthesized from low-cost industrially available chemicals. GRETE will also develop innovative technologies for chemical modification and enzymatic pre-treatment of pulps prior to cellulose dissolution. Chemical modification carried out either before or after dissolution and regeneration of pulps will bring chemical functionalities to fibres. The modifications either directly improve fiber properties (e.g. decreased fibrillation, improved fire resistance) or offer an easy route to further fibre processing. Improved dye adsorption and chemical reactivity will offer new options for dyeing and finishing treatments of the fibres, enabling e.g. the creation of a water-scarce end to the textile manufacturing value chain as well as open up the possibility for other targeted and water-scarce finishing treatments.


Teknologian tutkimuskeskus VTT Ou


University of Helsinki, Universität für Bodenkultur Wien, Universidade de Aveiro, Metsä Fibre Oyj, Celbi SA, Material Connexion Italia SRL and Vertech Group


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