Richard Corker, SABMiller and Professor Jonathan Coleman, CRANN, TCD
at CRANN, a nanoscience institute based at Trinity College Dublin, have
partnered with brewing company SABMiller on a project to increase the
shelf life of bottled beer in plastic bottles. The new deal will see
SABMiller invest in the project over a two year period.
Jonathan Coleman and his team in CRANN are using nanoscience research
methods to develop a new material that will prolong the shelf-life of
beer in plastic bottles. Current plastic bottles have a relatively short
shelf life, as both oxygen and carbon dioxide can permeate the plastic
and diminish the flavour.
new material, when added to plastic bottles. will make them extremely
impervious, meaning that oxygen cannot enter and that the carbon dioxide
cannot escape, thus preserving the taste and “fizz”.
team will exfoliate nano-sheets of boron nitride, each with a thickness
of approximately 50,000 times thinner than one human hair. These
nano-sheets will be mixed with plastic, which will result in a material
that is extremely impervious to gas molecules. The molecules will be
unable to diffuse through the material and shelf life will be increased.
well as increasing the shelf life of the beer itself, less material is
required in production, reducing cost and environmental impact.
Coleman’s technique which involves the exfoliation of boron nitride,
and other layered materials, has been published in leading publication, Science.