The Laptop with a Cornstarch Plastic Chassis

Loraine Lawson

CNET reports that the plastic chassis on Fujitsu's Lifebook laptop is made from cornstarch instead of petroleum. This means that in a landfill, it will disintegrate in a few months, as opposed to the 20-30 years the Bureau of Land Management estimates it will take your typical hard plastic container.


Overall, the cornstarch plastic is much easier on the planet. In addition to disappearing more quickly, it's production also creates 15 percent less carbon than petroleum-based plastic.


The report also notes that Fujitsu uses the plastic on cell phones and point-of-sale terminals, but currently, these products are only available in Japan -- which has been more aggressive about environmental programs since the 1970s.


It's expected the cost will decline as the companies that produce cornstarch-based plastic are able to expand production and sell their products in the U.S. and Europe.


Oddly, CNET seems to be the only source for information on this new product. Even Fujitsu's website did not offer a press release or any information on the environmentally-friendlier chassis.


Fujitsu also promotes its PRIMERGY(R) BX600 S3 --- which includes the BXD600 S3 blade chassis and the BX620 S4 blade server -- as offering reduced energy consumption. This year, the company also expanded its end-of-life IT products-recycling service in the U.S. and Canada.

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Jan 11, 2008 7:03 AM Don Hancock Don Hancock  says:
I can't believe this! Or maybe I should... This REALLY should be a front page story everywhere! The impact of a "semi" biodegradable plastic is enormous!! Fujitsu should be commended for their efforts. I can't believe it's been 6 months since this story was released and I've never heard anything about it - and I've been in the computer industry for 25 years...Anyway, kudos to Fujitsu and any other company that does the same.BTW, anyone ever heard about "edible, biodegradable" packing material? Years ago some company made shipping peanuts that were made out of cornstarch and water or something like that. The peanuts were actually edible and if they came in contact with water, they would instantly disintegrate into a harmless liquid! Two of my vendors in the mid-90's used them. At the time, the government had made statements about possible giving tax breaks to companies that would use them... Don HancockBaldwin County, Alabama Reply

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