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Market Overview

This thermoplastic polyamide incorporates a reactive lignin precursor enhancing the processing conditions of the thermoplastic and creating a more sustainable alternative to petroleum-derived materials. Long-chained biobased polyamides are designed to work with lignin’s own reactivity, solubility, and temperature constraints. There are currently no examples of a lignin- derived polyamide in scientific literature and there are very few industry examples. In an effort to fill this gap, this technology addresses the desire for a more sustainable alternative to petroleum-derived plastics by using a biobased source. The global bioplastics market is expected to reach $43.8 billion in 2020, growing at a CAGR of 28.8% from 2014 to 2020. In this unique market environment, Clemson University Researchers have developed a lignin-derived thermoplastic polyamide that has a high biobased percentage, imparts high strength thermal degradation temperatures, and incorporates a unique design for recyclability.
Srikanth Pilla


High value biobased polymer; Green polymer

Technical Summary:

This technology combines lignin with a polyamide chain to form a thermoplastic polymer. Thermoplastic polymers are desirable for their ease of manufacturing and processing. When combined with lignin, they possess the mechanical and material properties required for multiple industry applications. Plastics recycling is a hot topic area. Industries are often looking at sustainable pathways to make new plastics or replace existing ones. The lignin-polyamide chain is more environmentally friendly than traditional thermoplastic materials


  • Lignin increases the melt strength and viscosity of the materials by orders of magnitude above the raw nylon material.
  • This is a new concept with very few industrial or scientific literature examples, while still being sought after by National Labs.
  • The structure of lignin-polyamide is designed to be utilized for degradation in later chemical recycling.

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Technology Overview

State of Development

Proof of Concept


Advanced Materials

Serial Number


CURF Reference No.



Srikanth Pilla

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