Unmet Need: Better management and utilization of waste plastic accumulated in landfills
Huge amounts of plastics is produced every year and es expected to double over the next two decades. A vast majority of waste plastic is accumulated in landfills sloughing off in the natural environment as litter. The degradation of plastic polymers in landfill may take hundreds of years. The waste accumulated eventually ends up in oceans and has resulted in an ecological crisis. This waste poses a threat to marine and freshwater organisms and humans. These reasons make it imperative to develop alternative methods for plastic waste disposal other than mechanical recycling as it deteriorates the material properties and may again end up as plastic waste.
The Technology: Chemical recycling of waste plastic into monomers and fuels
An innovative sequential catalytic process to selectively convert co-mingled waste plastic to monomers and fuels is presented. This chemical recycling process recycles a mixture of three different waste plastics namely polyester, polyamide and polyolefin and converts them to polyester monomers, polyamide monomers and fuel-range hydrocarbons respectively.
• Monomers and fuels produced are used as liquid transportation fuels or lubricants.
• Monomers are re-used to synthesize fresh polyesters or polyamide.
• Mitigating the negative environmental impact caused by accumulated plastic wastes.
• Promotes circular economy in plastic industry.
• Recycle and reuse of the catalysts and solvents used in the conversion.
Provisional patent application has been filed.