To date, only a small proportion of the approximately 1.5 million metric tons of a wide variety of plastics used in passenger cars in Germany each year, for example as vehicle trim, bumpers or seat upholstery, are recycled as materials at the end of their useful life. A new joint research project headed by the Öko-Institut Freiburg together with Sicon GmbH, Volkswagen AG, BASF SE and the University of Clausthal is now to tackle the challenge holistically and systematically. Based on the VW-Sicon process, the project partners from industry and science are said to first develop a comprehensive concept for separating the complex material mixtures. Optimally balanced mechanical, chemical and thermal processing methods are to ensure that recycling is in line with market requirements. Challenges for mechanical recycling were, in particular, aging effects, impurities and modified material concepts. A central concern would be better separation in order to be able to recycle plastics more effectively. The concept to be developed should enable the most ecologically and economically sensible recycling for each resulting plastic fraction. The concept is then to form the basis for a subsequent implementation phase as part of a follow-up project, in which the processes proven in pilot plants are to be optimized, further developed and combined in the best possible way. The project partners then intend to evaluate the proposals developed in a workshop in dialog with other stakeholders from industry and science.
The research project "SyKuRa - Systemic Plastic Recycling from End-of-Life Vehicles" is funded by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research.
- Euwid Recycling und Entsorgung 40/2021 (10/5/2021)
- tu-clausthal.de (10/7/2021)
- Photo: © Sicon