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New high-quality mined nanomaterials mass produced for plastic and wood-plastic nanocomposites

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-Successful adaptation of nanotechnology in the end-products requires an access to the nanofiller technology and to the raw materials. The MINANO-project brings together partners representing end-user’s product know-how, formulation and processing technology and most importantly secure and reliable source of nano raw materials. Although there has been tremendous development in the area of nanocompounds with improved functionality, there exists a need to develop an efficient, continuous method of large-scale, low-cost synthesis of such materials. To answer to this need the following steps are suggested: 1) Integrate the functionalization of the high-quality nanoparticles directly on the continuous mass-production process already in the mining industry, 2) ensure controlled dispersion to the matrix material in large scale by cooperation between nanoparticle producer and end-product manufacturer, 3) assure sustainable and safe production and use by state-of-the-art life-cycle analysis. Based on the mass production process and cooperative value chain we concentrate on three major functionalities: Flame retardancy, UV resistance and antimicrobial properties. These properties are achieved by functionalized Mg(OH)2, ZnO and Ag nanoparticles. Societal and industrial impacts of these properties are extensive and there is a strong request of these functionalities for both plastic and wood-plastic based matrix materials. The use of nano-sized functional filler materials enables to use smaller amount of additives thus giving better recyclability, lower weight, higher mechanical strength and potential multifunctional features to the end-product. The combination of new nanofunctionalities gives far reaching possibilities for new types of functional plastics, and completely new possibilities to wood-plastic composites as well. This moves both mining industry and end-product companies towards high-tech on the long run.-


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