recycling techniques

Plastics recycling techniques

In the following we will describe the main recycling techniques, for this, it is necessary to make some clarifications first. The problem of garbage has been going on for many years, and recycling has emerged as one of the main solutions.

Factors to consider in recycling techniques

In the first place, the ecological factor has to do with the saving of resources and energy for the manufacture of new products, the economic factor is related to the monetary savings that exist and allows the derived products to be competitive in the market. Thirdly, the shortage, plastic resins worldwide are going through a serious problem, so that in many seasons there is not an adequate supply of raw material and plastic recycling is presented as an option that must be taken advantage of.

What recycling techniques are there?

There are 4 different recycling techniques:

Primary or post-industrial: 

This type of recycling is mainly intended for the industry since it is related to the waste generated by the industry and can be integrated back into the production chain more easily since there is no need for separation or cleaning. In this way they are used as raw materials, only the percentage used must be taken care of so as not to affect the quality of the final product.

Secondary or mechanical: 

In this type of recycling are those products that do not undergo a change in their structure or composition, i.e., they only go through a treatment process in which they are washed, disinfected, ground, or pelletized.

Tertiary or chemical

In this technique, the chemical structure of the plastic undergoes variations, it may be that by mixing some compound, catalyst, oxygen, or the application of certain heat, they may undergo depolymerization or their molecules may be affected by defragmentation; in this way, it is possible to obtain liquids, solids, and gaseous compounds. There are many researchers who consider biodegradable or compostable plastics as a form of tertiary or chemical recycling because when they are reintegrated into the environment their composition is affected.

Quaternary or energetic

Generally, all plastics, when burned, release a great deal of energy because their main components are carbon and hydrogen, therefore, they are an excellent fuel. That is, used in this way to heat or generate energy specifically for some other process is excellent. What must be taken care of in this procedure is the release of carbon dioxide.

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