Centexbel is the scientific and technical centre for the Belgian Textile and Plastics industry. Its activities are focused on research, testing and other services to the industry (eg certification). Centexbel works closely together with the industry and knows the needs of its member companies very well.

The R&D focus of Centexbel is on applied research, funded by private entities as well as national and international agencies. Well-selected strategic subjects include (i) extrusion processes and related polymer formulation (incl. biopolymers); (ii) finishing and coating of textiles; (iii) recycling of textiles and polymers (iv) 3D textile structures via weaving, knitting and braiding.

Sustainability is very important to Centexbel. That is why a lot of its research is focusing on the application of biobased materials in textiles and plastics. In the past decennium large expertise was built-up in the domain of formulation and pilot line processing of a range of biopolymers including PLA, PBS, PHA and biopolymer blends. This resulted in a range of industrial implementations in different domains.

Centexbel has an extensive equipment platform relevant for manufacturing of biobased plastics and textiles, eg compounding and filament extrusion lines. Further, Centexbel has all relevant testing equipment and expertise for evaluating the properties of biobased textiles and plastics.

Role in the project

CENTEXBEL will lead the work package on the biopolymer processing, where it will be responsible for the PHA filament development and the characterisation of the processed PHA materials. The filament development will start at labscale and continue on the pilot extrusion lines as soon as sufficient material is available and first experience was built-up at labscale. The PHA based formulations will be evaluated for their processability in textile intermediates with relevant properties and their application in real end products.
Further, Centexbel will also contribute to the compounding at pilot scale of the PHAs and support the textile products development for applications in the field of agrotextiles and medical devices.