Project Example Material Development

Processing of cellulose using plastics processing technologies

Feasibility Study

Cellulose constitutes the main part of plant fibers and is the most abundant polymer on earth. It is commonly used by humans. Be it paper, cosmetic additives, pharmaceuticals or clothing - cellulose is an indispensable part of daily life. However, the production of compact three-dimensional cellulosic parts is very challenging. Either the parts show a low strength and density or it requires a labour-intensive manual production.


A feasibility study was conducted in order to evaluate whether three-dimensional cellulosic parts can be produced using plastics processing technologies.


The feasibility study consisted of:

                                    Description of the chemical and physical properties of cellulose

                                    Overview on technologies to analyse the properties of cellulosic materials

                                            Outline of paper production processes

                                               State-of-the-art (literature and patent search)

                                    Conception for the automated production of three dimensional cellulosic parts

                                               Laboratory experiments


Scientific Search

Using relevant databases, scientific data was searched for and discussed. The results were presented via text and in a table.

literature search
Summary and resume of relevant publications


Own concepts were created and SWOT analyses were performed. In agreement with the industrial project partner, a production technology was chosen.

cellulose processing
Illustration of a concept for cellulose processing

Material Selection

Different cellulosic materials were selected and processed.

different cellulose materials
Comparison of cellulosic materials

Laboratory Experiments

Tensile rods were manufactured using selected cellulosic materials.

Tensile rods of different cellulosic materials
Tensile rods of different cellulosic materials

Project Partner



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