Last week, Teijin announced that it is supporting the Clean2Antarctica (C2A) project, which will harness plastic waste and solar power in a “Quest for Change” challenge to conduct an expedition on the cleanest continent on earth. Teijin is supporting C2A as one of nine projects celebrating the company’s century of innovation since its founding in 1918.

The C2A challengers comprise Dutch adventurer Edwin ter Velde and his crew of students and young professionals. They will launch their mission on August 27 from Amsterdam aboard the Morgenster tall ship, a classic brig sailing ship, which will head to Patagonia in southern-most Argentina. The youngsters will be asked to plan the future of Teijin as a leading company in circular entrepreneurship to be summarized by the time they reach to their first port of call, Tenerife, Canary Islands on September 17.

Later, C2A will begin its month-long journey on Antarctica in the eco-friendly Solar Voyager. The vehicle will depart from Union Glacier Camp in West Antarctica on December 10 and then attempt to drive some 2,300km across the frozen continent to and from the geographic South Pole.

“The Teijin Group is delighted to be supporting the practical and symbolic ambitions of the C2A project as part of its commitment to creating new value for society,” the company says. “Over the very long term, Teijin aims to provide value-added solutions that improve the quality of life (QOL) of people for the next 100 years.”

Teijin is sponsoring the Morgenster’s sailing voyage and providing advanced high-performance materials and technologies for the Solar Voyager, which is made largely from harvested used PET bottles and other recycled plastic waste.

Teijin materials used for the Solar Voyager include:

– Twaron para-aramid fiber on the underside of the vehicle for durable protection against sharp ice. Compared to steel, Twaron boasts six times the tensile strength and offers superior heat resistance and elastic modulus, yet is just one-fifth the weight of steel.

– Technora para-aramid fiber for all rope applications, including towing, reinforcing and anchoring the vehicle. Another application will be to tune the angle of the solar panels to optimally absorb solar energy. Technora offers high tensile strength and excellent resistance to impact, fatigue, chemicals, moisture and heat.

– Endumax ultra-high molecular weight polyethylene (UHMWPE) will be used to maintain optimal tire shape for external stability, minimized rolling resistance and maximized traction. Endumax achieves excellent strength, dimensional stability, low weight and durability.

– Tenax carbon fiber will reinforce the vehicle’s three-dimensionally printed PET-used body. Tenax boasts high-tensile strength, high-modulus elasticity and low density.