Manufacturing Functional Materials Using Sub-critical Water

Manufacturing Technology

One environmentally oriented technology that has gained attention in the manufacturing field is a reaction technology that makes full use of the safe and secure properties of water.

When water is heated to a high temperature and placed under high pressure, it can effectively dissolve organic and other substances and, through the activated action of ions, can also make it easier to combine substances. Being committed to developing manufacturing technologies that place a reduced burden on the environment, Kao is exploring the use of pressurized hot water under sub-critical conditions to manufacture functional materials.

In a functional material glyceryl ether manufacturing process, for example, we have developed a reaction process that uses sub-critical hydrothermal reaction technologies and generates no waste. Using data obtained from pilot facilities, we analyzed the reaction rate and the effects that could be expected from operation on a larger scale, enabling us to quantify the operating factors. The establishment of this technology has dramatically reduced reaction time and made highly selective and efficient synthesis possible.

Furthermore, the water used in the manufacturing process is reused in precision manufacturing through the application of membrane separation technologies that take into consideration molecule size and affinity with membrane materials. This makes it possible to greatly reduce the consumption of precious water resources while bringing the entire manufacturing process to a high degree of completion.

We are confident that the manufacturing process for glyceryl ether we have developed, based on the use of sub-critical water, will become widely used throughout the world in many applications.

Facilities for manufacture of glyceryl ether (sub-critical hydrothermal reactor)

Related Actions and Goals

Kao’s ESG Strategy Kirei Lifestyle Plan


Sustainable Development Goals

SDGs GOAL 12:Responsible Consumption and Production

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