Lignin barrier coating gets closer to market



qutbluebox is working closely with QUT researchers – Associate Professor Les Edye and Mr Albert Tietz – industry and early stage investors to take a new, environmentally friendly waterproof coating to the marketplace.

With recent seed funding from Black Sheep Capital, we’re now in a position to further optimise the formulation and take it through pilot testing and industrial-scale trials. At the same time, we’re also engaging with multinationals and Australian-based companies interested in adopting the coating technology.

So what’s exciting about this product? Well, it’s made from lignin, which is a naturally occurring bi-product from the pulp and paper industry lignin. Not only does this give the coating ‘green credentials, there’s also lots of it available, it’s inexpensive and 100% recyclable and renewable. Existing coatings are either wax or petroleum-based and they’re not recyclable.

bluebox began working with the research team in 2012 to progress this project from an idea (initially based on using sugar cane) to a commercially-valid product. We invested about $250,000 in proof-of-concept funding to enable the researchers to the revise the formulation and scale it up into commercial quantities for commercial trialing.

Where to next? Well, we’re very hopeful that this coating solution will hit the market relatively soon.


QUT researcher Albert Tietz has been a key force behind developing the coating.