Japan Partnership for Circular Economy

Japan Partnership for Circular Economy


Circular Polymer Technology

[Company / organization] Sulzer Japan Limited


Sulzer Chemtech and Worn Again Technologies

Time started (or to be started)


Technology and achievement etc

Sulzer is a key shareholder in Worn Again Technologies, a company

dedicated to textile recycling. In 2022 we announced that the first pilot plant will be built in Winterthur, Switzerland, and that Sulzer has increased its share in Worn Again Technologies.

Building on our experience in the process development and licensing of polylactic acid (PLA) polymers and co-polymers, Chemtech is creating a portfolio of process technologies for biobased polymers.

In 2022, significant progress was made on establishing pilot plants to test different raw materials, such as lactic acid, and developing formulas to modify properties of PLA polymers. Sulzer’s unique ring-opening technology to produce biopolymers such as PLA is suited to producing other biopolymers and co-polymers.

It has been our goal to have a pilot plant platform available to test different synthesis routes and formulas on different scales to accelerate process development – and this was implemented in Switzerland in 2022.

Polymer recycling is currently driving the entire plastics industry to comply with emerging regulations for quotas and product bans in specific applications of polymers. Chemtech began work on polymer recycling activities years ago and has gained significant knowledge of various technologies and processes. Principally, Chemtech is active in depolymerization technologies for pure polymers such as polystyrene, polymethyl methacrylate (PMMA), and polyethylene terephthalate (PET) as well as in mixed plastics recycling, which is typically performed by pyrolysis processes. 

Purification of either the monomers (such as styrene) or the processing of pyrolysis oils stems from Chemtech’s core competencies in distillation, extraction, and crystallization.

Reference URL

https://sustainability-report.sulzer.com/sites/default/files/2023-03/sulzer-sustainability-report-2022.pdf and https://sustainability-report.sulzer.com/