SORPLAS™, Sony's proprietary flame-retardant recycled plastic with up to 99% recycled material utilization rate
[Company / organization] Sony Group Corporation
Since its commercialization in 2011, SORPLAS has been used in various Sony Group products, and since 2014, we have been expanding our business domain by establishing an external sales system.
Description of technology and business model
SORPLAS is the result of a project initiated at Sony Central R&D Laboratories in 1995, which embodies the company's strong desire “adding new value to waste.”
At that time, research was underway to convert waste plastics into high-value materials, such as industrial wastewater treatment agent or water-absorbent materials. One of the research led to the discovery of a sulfur-based flame retardant (an additive that makes plastics less flammable) that exhibits high flame retardancy to polycarbonate resin at very small amounts. Thanks to Sony’s novel flame-retardant, which makes it possible to impart flame-retardancy by the addition of a very small amount of less than 1% of total content while conventional flame retardants require an addition amount of around 10%, SORPLAS not only surpasses conventional flame retardant plastics in terms of durability, flame-retardancy and recyclability, but also achieves an outstanding utilization rate of up to 99% waste plastics. The effective utilization of SORPLAS has been shown to reduce CO2 emissions in product manufacturing by up to 80%.* Moreover, through the optimal blending technology of various additives, waste polycarbonate and proprietary flame retardants, SORPLAS can be made to meet the needs of a variety of products.
Sony first used SORPLAS in its products in 2011 and has since incorporated it into a wide variety of Sony Group’s products including select models for BRAVIA® TV, Xperia™ smartphones, full-frame interchangeable lens digital cameras and video cameras. Later, Sony commenced external sales to further promote resource recycling, and contribute to a society with a reduced environmental impact. Many companies are interested in using SORPLAS. It is already being used in a wide variety of products, including televisions, smartphones, computers, lighting fixtures, and office supplies.
* In the case of SORPLAS in the BRAVIA LCD TV KDL-40EX52H. Based on Sony’s calculations, assuming plastic manufacturing (including shipping)
Targets and achievements
Based on the theme "Sustainable business leads to true environmental contribution," which has been stated since the start of the business, SORPLAS provides stable quality and practical prices, enabling businesses to become self-reliant. In order to contribute to the sustainable environment and expand it, we are working to build a more flexible supply chain and develop new materials for stable growth and adoption by more companies and industries.
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