High Performance

Cost-effective lignin-based carbon fibers for new fields of application

Saal A
Freitag, 13.09.2024, 09:50 - 10:15 Uhr

New carbon fibers from Lignin were developed. The Lignin precursor fibers were spun from pure water, avoiding problems with toxic solvents. The new Lignin-based carbon fibers combines the requirements of a sustainable carbon fiber derived from biomass with very cost-effective raw materials and processes.

Erik Frank (DITF Denkendorf)
New carbon fibers were developed using low-cost lignin salts as raw materials. Using simple clean water as solvent allows the preparation of endless lignin fibers by a dry-spinning process. The lignin fibers were stabilized in hot air as endless yarns on spools. Such spools could be easily carbonized to endless rovings of carbon fibers. The used lignin is a waste stream from cellulose industry, which results in very low cost of the Lignin available. Using lignin salts with water as solvent allows the precursor production without any toxic substances and very low energy demands. The lignin precursor yarns were oxidized in hot air and carbonized in conditions comparable to a standard polyacrylonitrile precursor yarn. So existing technologies for carbon fiber production could be used for bio-based carbon fibers with an excellent LCA. The scale up to kilogram and, in future, to tons scale is going on. The low cost Lignin-based carbon fibers allows entering new markets and applications for carbon fibers.