Joint Development of Catalytic Technology Using Carbon Dioxide and Silicon Compounds

Tokyo, Japan—Tosoh Corporation and National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST) have jointly developed catalytic technology to synthesize diethyl carbonate, a raw material for polycarbonates and polyurethanes, using carbon dioxide (CO2) and a silicon compound as raw materials.

The project team discovered a catalytic reaction that synthesizes diethyl carbonate from CO2 and the silicon compound (tetraethoxysilane). Because the reaction does not produce water as a by-product, it extends catalyst life and heightens reaction efficiency. Commercializing this technology is expected to contribute to a carbon recycling society where CO2 becomes a resource for reuse. The research findings were presented in the online bulletin of industry journal ChemSusChem, published by Chemistry Europe, on November 24, 2020.

To drastically reduce CO2 emissions from fossil fuel use, the need to develop carbon recycling technologies has increased. These technologies need to recover and reuse CO2 as a raw material for application in various products.

On June 7, 2019, the Japanese Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry’s Agency for Natural Resources and Energy published The Roadmap for Carbon Recycling Technologies. The agency supposes oxygen containing compounds, such as polyurethanes and polycarbonates, as examples of the reuse of CO2 in raw materials.

Tosoh and AIST undertook collaborative research into developing catalysts for reaction of low-cost, low environmental impact, renewable raw materials with CO2 to manufacture oxygen containing chemicals. In this project, the team developed the technology to synthesize diethyl carbonate from CO2 and silicon compound by using specific catalysts.

The research project team is working to improve its technology’s reaction and catalyst to establish the lowest-cost, most energy- and resource-saving production method possible. It is also applying itself to solving any technical problems to ensure the technology’s practical application, including scaling up reaction volume. We aim for the practical application of its technology by around 2030.

General Inquiries

Dr. Norihisa Fukaya
Research Team Leader
Heteroatom Chemistry Team
Interdisciplinary Research Center for Catalytic Chemistry (IRC3)
National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST)
Central 5, 1-1-1, Higashi, Tsukuba, Ibaraki 305-8565
TEL: 029-861-6398
FAX: 029-861-4571
E-mail: [email protected]

 Interview Requests

National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology
Public Relations Department, Press Office
AIST Tsukuba Headquarters and Information Technology Collaborative Research Center
Central 5, 1-1-1, Higashi, Tsukuba, Ibaraki 305-8565
TEL: 029-862-6216
FAX: 029-862-6212
E-mail: [email protected]

Tosoh Corporation
International Public Relations
3-8-2, Shiba, Minato-ku, Tokyo 105-8623
Email: [email protected]



Tosoh Corporation is the parent of the Tosoh Group, which comprises over 100 companies worldwide and a multiethnic workforce of over 12,000 people and generated net sales of ¥786.1 billion (US$7.2 billion at the average rate of ¥108.7 to the US dollar) in fiscal 2020, ended March 31, 2020.


Tosoh is one of the largest chlor-alkali manufacturers in Asia. The company supplies the plastic resins and an array of the basic chemicals that support modern life. Tosoh’s petrochemical operations supply ethylene, polyethylene, and functional polymers, while its advanced materials business serves the global semiconductor, display, and solar industries. Tosoh has also pioneered sophisticated bioscience systems that are used for the monitoring of life-threatening diseases. In addition, Tosoh demonstrates its commitment to a sustainable future in part by manufacturing a variety of eco-products.

Stock Exchange Ticker Symbol: 4042


This document may contain forward-looking statements, including, without limitation, statements concerning product development, objectives, goals, and commercial introductions, which involve certain risks and uncertainties. Forward-looking statements are identified through the use of the word anticipates and other words of similar meaning. Actual results may differ significantly from the results expressed in forward-looking statements.



For more information, please contact


Gina Lau
International Public Relations
Tosoh Corporation

[email protected]
Tel: +81 3 5427 5118
Fax: +81 3 5427 5198