Samsara Eco scales up with new research facility for ‘continuous plastic recycling’ technology

Samsara Eco scales up with new research facility for ‘continuous plastic recycling’ technology

Samsara Eco founder and CEO Paul Riley with research founder Vanessa Vongsouthi 

Australian enviro-tech startup Samsara Eco has stepped up plans to commercialise its ‘continuous recycling’ technology and rid the world of plastic waste through a new a research and development facility planned for Queanbeyan.

Armed with $54 million from a Series A funding round led by Main Sequence at the end of last year, the company aims to have the facility operational by late 2024.

Samsara Eco’s technology uses plastic-eating enzymes to infinitely recycle waste and says the new facility is the first step in its plans to recycle 1.5 million tonnes of plastic per annum by 2030.

Located within the Poplars Innovation Precinct at Jerrabomberra, a suburb of Queanbeyan, the new facility is expected to drive Samsara Eco’s plans to scale its patented enzymatic capabilities which the company says have the scope to recycle plastics after every use.

The Sydney-based company, which developed the technology in partnership with the Australian National University (ANU) in Canberra, says the Queanbeyan facility will be ‘solely focused on accelerating Samsara Eco’s scientific research, ready for commercialisation in future’.

The company’s R&D team is currently based at ANU in nearby Canberra and Samsara Eco says it will continue to collaborate with the university as it scales towards commercialisation.  

“We’ve had fantastic growth out of our ANU lab so far, but the plastic problem is growing fast,” says Samsara Eco founder and CEO Paul Riley.

“As we gear up towards commercialisation, access to our first R&D facility will enable us to accelerate the capabilities of infinite recycling and scale our solution which breaks down plastics in minutes, not centuries.”

Riley says the plastics crisis is intimately linked to the world’s climate crisis.

“You can’t solve the climate crisis unless you solve the plastics crisis,” he says.

“Plastic is one of the greatest inventions of the 20th century and provides enormous utility because of its durability, flexibility and strength. Yet, it’s also an environmental disaster with almost every piece of the nine billion tonnes ever made still on the planet.”

Samsara Eco’s vision is to use existing plastic waste to infinitely recycle it, diminishing the need to use fossil fuels to create new plastic.

It also aims to turn on its head current plastic recycling methods, which it says only saves less than 10 per cent of plastic waste from landfill.

Samsara Eco’s infinite recycling technology basically uses enzymes to return plastic to its core molecules, which can then be used to recreate new plastic through an endless recycling process.

The company’s enzymatic library even tackles challenging plastics such as coloured, multi-layered, mixed plastics and textiles such as polyester and nylon 6,6 - one of the most common materials used in the textile and plastic industries.

The R&D facility is said to be pivotal to the company’s plans to expand its enzymatic library. 

Earlier this year, Samsara Eco secured a major partnership with Canadian apparel giant Lululemon to create the world’s first infinitely recycled nylon and polyester from apparel waste.

Samsara Eco’s move to Queanbeyan sets the company up as a key anchor tenant of the Poplars Innovation Precinct which is focused on attracting defence, space, cyber-security, information technology and scientific research sectors to the new precinct.

“Samsara Eco’s innovative technology has the potential to put Queanbeyan and Jerrabomberra on the international stage as countries all over the world look for ways to reduce waste and work toward net-zero carbon emissions,” says Cr Kenrick Winchester, the mayor of Queanbeyan-Palerang Regional Council.

“We hope that securing Samsara Eco is the first of many new and exciting initiatives for the precinct and we look forward to the employment opportunities the precinct will provide.”

Get our daily business news

Sign up to our free email news updates.

 
Unpacking equity: Finding your funding fit
Partner Content
Armed with a growing business and a great opportunity, a business owner’s next challe...
Australian Business Growth Fund
Advertisement

Related Stories

Meta slammed over "dereliction" of commitment to Australian news

Meta slammed over "dereliction" of commitment to Australian news

The decision by Meta (NASDAQ: META) to "deprecate" the Fa...

AF Legal acquires Armstrong Contested Wills & Estates in deal worth up to $3.75m

AF Legal acquires Armstrong Contested Wills & Estates in deal worth up to $3.75m

A year on from the failure of an $11 million merger with Go to Cour...

GreenCollar buys into EnergyLink Services to tackle agribusiness decarbonisation

GreenCollar buys into EnergyLink Services to tackle agribusiness decarbonisation

Environmental markets project developer GreenCollar has made a stra...

Mollymook Beach startup Gravity Drinks fizzing on $1m seed raise

Mollymook Beach startup Gravity Drinks fizzing on $1m seed raise

An Australian seltzer startup that recently started ranging in clos...