You are here : Home > Extracthive, a recycled carbon fiber that’s easy on the environment

Innovation for industry | Environment

Extracthive, a recycled carbon fiber that’s easy on the environment

Published on 15 December 2022
​An eco-friendly, competitively-priced, high performance product for a more secure carbon fiber supply chain.

Extracthive recovers carbon fiber from used composite parts and gives it a second life in new parts. An initial industrial demonstrator will launch in 2023.

PHYre ® recycled carbon fiber. Pilot of the HYre ® Pde recycling process © Extracthive

Carbon-fiber composites are booming, with an 11% CAGR expected over the next decade. However, producing new carbon fibers generates 20 tons to 40 tons of carbon dioxide (CO2) per ton produced. Extracthive is developing a process for recycling carbon-fiber-containing composite materials. Called solvolysis, the process, which reduces CO2emissions by 80%,  separates the matrix from the fiber with a heated solvent.

The recovered fiber does not cost any more than new fiber and achieves 98% of its fracture toughness and tensile strength. It is compatible with multiple polymer matrices. Tests are underway with sporting goods, boat, and aeronautics manufacturers to validate its performance under representative conditions.

Extracthive is based on more than ten years of CEA R&D and continues to collaborate with CEA researchers on lifecycle analysis (LCA), fiber characterization, and degraded polymer resin recycling. In 2023, it will launch an initial industrial demonstrator in France, where its customers are. At the same time, it is developing new recycling processes for lithium batteries and silicon carbide, used in chemistry and metallurgy.

Key figure: 80%

Throughout its useful life, Extracthive’s recycled carbon fiber emits 80% less greenhouse gases than new fiber

Key Markets:

  • Boating
  • Sports and recreation
  • Electric vehicles


  • Solvolysis of end-of-life composite parts
  • Matrix depolymerization, carbon fiber recovery
  • Solvent regeneration and reuse

Year founded: 2015

CEA institutes: Energy Division