Composite materials, as their name suggests, are created by combining two or more components, often things with different properties to create new useful substances. They appear in nearly every industry, from construction and manufacturing to transportation and agriculture. As the demand for lightweight materials increases, experts expect the global composites end-product market to reach a value of $113.2 billion by 2022.

New trends pushing toward green and sustainable manufacturing mean the sector is moving away from traditional human-made materials and switching to biocomposites that use natural, renewable and biodegradable supplies. What are the benefits of biocomposites, and why do industry professionals want to encourage the adoption of this sustainable alternative?

What defines biocomposites?

What defines biocomposites, and what sets them apart from other human-made composites utilized in construction and manufacturing? Biocomposites are a material formed by a matrix — resin — and a reinforcement of natural fibers. Composites traditionally use a petrochemical resin and manufactured reinforcements made from things like fiberglass or carbon fiber.

Biocomposites have earned their name because they don’t rely on human-made materials, utilizing natural sources for both the resin and reinforcement materials. While both composites and biocomposites have a place in construction and manufacturing, many related industries are trying to encourage professionals to adopt biocomposites as their primary resource. Why are we pushing toward more sustainable alternatives?

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