In an article published on January 25, 2016 by the magazine Chemical & Engineering News (C&EN), senior editor Alexander H. Tullo reports on a new chemical process to make furan dicarboxylic methyl ester (FDME, no CAS number available) from fructose (CAS 57-48-7). The process uses chemical catalysis to convert fructose and methanol (CAS 67-56-1) into FDME and was developed by chemical manufacturer DuPont and agriculture company Archer Daniels Midland (ADM) in a joint venture. The companies plan on reacting FDME with 1,3-propanediol (CAS 504-63-2) to make the polymer polytrimethylene furandicarboxylate (PTF, no CAS number available). Furthermore, FDME can react with ethylene glycol (CAS 107-21-1) to form polyethylene furanoate (PEF, no CAS number available). PTF and PEF are biobased alternatives to conventional polyethylene terephthalate (PET, CAS 25038-59-9), with better gas barrier properties, and shall be used in packaging applications such as beverage bottles, but also in fiber and engineering plastic applications. DuPont and ADM plan to build a 60-metric-ton-per-year demonstration plant in Decatur, Illinois, U.S., to produce FDME for testing and research.
Alexander H. Tullo (January 25, 2016). “DuPont, ADM unveil route to biobased polyester.” Chemical & Engineering News
Debbie Donberg (January 22, 2016). “DuPont joins ADM to offer bio-based material.” Paper, Film & Foil Converter
Jenny Eagle (January 20, 2016). “DuPont and ADM to build demo plant for producing FDME from fructose.” Food Production Daily