Polypropiolactone-high molecular weight (PPL-HMW) is a biodegradable polymer with attractive mechanical and physical properties that make it suitable for packaging and other thermoplastic applications. It is an aliphatic polyester that is stable and easily transportable.

How It Is Used

PPL-HMW can be used as an alternative to conventional, petroleum based polymers, including polyethylene (PE), polypropylene (PP), and polyethylene terephthalate (PET). PE is commonly used in packaging, such as films. PPL is advantageous for its barrier properties, biodegradability, and reduced environmental impact.


PPL has a structure similar to those of two other aliphatic polyesters, polyhydroxybutyrate (PHB) and polycaprolactone (PCL), and can be degraded in the same, diverse, set of environments. Novomer PPL-HMW is classified as biodegradable under the standards of: EN 13432 (2000) and ASTM 6400.


Properties of PPL-HMW vs. Conventional Polymers

Impact strength, Izod (notched) 64 96 347 53
Tensile strength 21 4081 7 4500
Tensile elongation 10 12 10 10
Tensile modulus 1241 1360 207 1724
Flexural strength 20 40 6 41
Flexural modulus 896 1322 138 1379


Barrier Properties of PPL-HMW

Polymer O2 Permeability*
EVOH <0.05
— [Polypropiolactone] —
PVDC 1-2
Nylon 6 2-6
PET 4-8
PLA 40-60
PE >300

*  cc-mil/100in2 - day

Novomer biodegradable PPL, produced from plant-based or renewable raw materials, has less environmental impact and requires less energy to process when compared to its conventional counterparts.

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Our Family of Sustainable Chemical Products

Acrylic Acid

Novomer has developed a cost-competitive, sustainable route to make acrylic acid and acrylate esters.


Polypropiolactone (PPL) is a biodegradable polymer with attractive mechanical and physical properties suitable for packaging and thermoplastic applications.


SustainolTM polyols play a key role in the production of polyurethane products. 

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