Why a biodegradable iPhone case? Since we were born we have been promoting actions of circular economy and spreding messages that invite you to lead a more sustainable life. In our constant effort to reduce our ecological footprint, we have boarded a new adventure. If we make covers with recycled polymers extracted from fishing nets, why not try with polymers capturing the CO2 from the… air? See how we do it!
The material: A compostable polymer that is extracted from plants and uses the CO2 they capture
Nature considers greenhouse gases (atmospheric carbon among others), as a raw material. That is, trees and plants capture CO2 from the air to produce organic matter. So, why not use this system to produce a polymer that can also disintegrate more quickly? The material from which we make Seed POPSICASE are made comes from plants. These plants are corn, cassava, sugar cane or beet which capture and sequester CO2. Then, they transform it into long chain polylactic acid (PLA) sugar molecules.
The plants undergo a grinding process from which starch (glucose) is extracted. Then, enzymes are added to convert the glucose into dextrose by a process called hydrolysis. Then, the microorganisms then ferment this dextrose into lactic acid. Finally, it transforms it into a long chain polylactic polymer (PPLA) that makes it a tough and flexible material.
There are different companies that work with it, so we chose Ingeo, the PPLA material made by an American company that has been working for years in this area and offers a great result.
Injecting the material into molds
As we have already pointed out at some point when we have referred to the production of casings made with recycled material, one of the most important elements in the production of a casing is the mold in which the material must be injected.
The molds are made of special steels that are highly resistant to high temperatures and closing pressures. This is the most complex step of the whole process and the one that requires the longest elaboration time (we are talking about several months of work) because it is designed with an infinite number of pieces that must fit perfectly. Any variation or mismatch has repercussions on the final piece and that is why we must be extremely careful. And if not, watch this video:
POPSICASE: El enorme trabajo detrás de las pequeñas cosas – The enormous work behind little things from POPSICASE on Vimeo.
In the case of the Discover cases, we counted on the collaboration of partners who have molds with a design that guarantees protection. And precisely because of the complexity of this mold, and because we are fully involved in the production process, we can only make a few Discover models. And that is why sometimes we cannot offer you biodegradable cases that fit your phones, or we use the design of one that fits another.
The result: a biodegradable iPhone case that completely desappears in less than a year.
As a result of injecting this PPLA in a mould, is not only biodegradable phone case in nature, i.e. it can be digested by microorganisms so that the carbon atoms in the polymer chains are broken down and returned to nature (petroleum-based plastics cannot). But, it is also compostable phone case, i.e. it degrades within a certain amount of time under certain conditions. In this case between 12 and 18 months.
Look at this mini video that shows what happens in 6 months if we plant a biodegradable phone case:
Discover POPSICASE is a case available in turquoise tones (light and dark) that protects the screen and the phone from all 4 sides. It is also resistant to any kind of shock and extremely pleasant to touch, because the final material is not completely uniform. DISCOVER IT HERE!