Solution for recycling coloured plastics – UK

Solution for recycling coloured plastics – UK

Posted on September 17, 2023 by DrRossH in Plastic Recycling

A new method for recycling coloured plastics has been developed by scientists at Cardiff University in the United Kingdom.

Source: Solution for recycling coloured plastics – Inside Waste

“Our current recycling economy only allows plastics and polymers to be recycled a finite number of times, after which they go to landfill or are incinerated. This is a huge environmental challenge,” said Ward.

“It is also a problem for industry who want to reuse and recycle coloured polymers but are limited by additives which affect the quality and colour of recycled products.

“We’ve addressed this in our study by taking coloured polymers, unmaking them, isolating the monomers, and re-making them into pure, white polymers. This is the first time that has ever been achieved and it goes right to the heart of tackling the problem of plastic recycling.”

Using a reactor based in the labs at Cardiff University’s School of Chemistry, the team chose specific molecules known as monomers to make plastics that are strong and stable, whilst adding in recyclability as part of the molecular design process.