Scientists in Japan have perfected a form of environmentally friendly plant-based plastic which Fujitsu will use to build commercial laptops due to ship this spring.
The advanced material uses polymer alloy technology that blends plastic with polylactic acid, which is derived from corn and other plants. The result is a laptop casing that is made of 50 per cent natural products.
It is also very easy to mould, making it suitable for manufacture. Crucially, there is no price premium for the substance, which will be used in Fujitsu's forthcoming FMV-BIBLO NB80K laptop.
"Customers are more aware of the environment and are increasingly asking for environmentally conscious products," Peter Eßer, executive vice president of volume products and supply operations at Fujitsu Siemens told vnunet.com.
"But customers are also not prepared to pay a cent extra for it. That gives us a challenge."
When the plastic is used Fujitsu estimates that it will reduce 15 per cent of the total CO2 emissions of the laptop over its lifecycle.
According to the Japanese electronics giant, safety has not been compromised as the material is treated with flame retardant chemicals and can be used to mass-produce all systems, from PDAs to servers.
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