Fujitsu Laptop with Biodegradable Chassis

Fujitsu goes green

Fujitsu is offering a laptop with a biodegradable chassis made out of plastic derived from cornstarch.

Traditional plastics are manufactured from non-renewable resources such as oil, coal and natural gas. Biodegradable plastics on the other hand are made with plant-based materials and have been available for many years. But due to their high cost they have never replaced traditional non-degradable plastics in the computer market.

The biodegradable Fujitsu LifeBook is only available in Japan at the moment, according to media reports. The cornstarch-based plastic is more expensive than conventional plastic, but it results in 15 percent less carbon emissions.

Starch is a natural polymer and is a carbohydrate produced by plants during photosynthesis. Cereal plants and tubers often contain a large quantity of starch, which can be processed into a "bioplastic."

However, as it is soluble in water, items made from starch can swell and deform when exposed to moisture. But this can overcome by modifying the starch into a different polymer.

For example when the starch is harvested from corn, potatoes or wheat, a micro organism transforms it into lactic acid, which is then chemically treated to cause the molecules of lactic acid to link up into long chains or polymers, which bond together to form a plastic called polylactide (PLA).

PLA has been commercially available since 1990 and is used for items such as plant pots and disposable nappies, as well as medical implants. However PLA is said to be significantly more expensive than conventional plastics and has therefore failed to gain widespread acceptance.

Fujitsu has already used the cornstarch plastic on cell phones and point-of-sale terminals, and the thinking is that the chassis, when deposed of in a landfill will decompose in months, unlike conventional plastic which takes decades.

Fujitsu could not be reached for comment.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Tom Jowitt

Techworld
Show Comments

Cool Tech

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Stocking Stuffer

SmartLens - Clip on Phone Camera Lens Set of 3

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Aysha Strobbe

Microsoft Office 365/HP Spectre x360

Microsoft Office continues to make a student’s life that little bit easier by offering reliable, easy to use, time-saving functionality, while continuing to develop new features that further enhance what is already a formidable collection of applications

Michael Hargreaves

Microsoft Office 365/Dell XPS 15 2-in-1

I’d recommend a Dell XPS 15 2-in-1 and the new Windows 10 to anyone who needs to get serious work done (before you kick back on your couch with your favourite Netflix show.)

Maryellen Rose George

Brother PT-P750W

It’s useful for office tasks as well as pragmatic labelling of equipment and storage – just don’t get too excited and label everything in sight!

Cathy Giles

Brother MFC-L8900CDW

The Brother MFC-L8900CDW is an absolute stand out. I struggle to fault it.

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?