Plastic Recycling: A Concise Guide of Recycling Process and Types
Plastic recycling is the technical method of recuperating scrap or waste plastic and recycling it into other useful product. There are several stages in the plastic recycling process such as collecting, sorting, shredding, melting, and reshaping. This article briefly discusses the process of plastic recycling.
Plastic recycling is typically the way by which the natural resources are returned to nature to ensure their sustainability. The toxic waste created by plastic has been affecting the environment in a deplorable way.
Researches prove that waste plastic has been affecting all the countries around the world in a hazardous manner along with all the main firms that use plastics in their production and packaging process.
With an equivalent of 1 garbage truck full of plastic dumped into the ocean every minute, it has been predicted that the oceans will be more occupied with plastic than fish or other sea-inhabitants by 2050.
Plastic recycling is the technical method of recuperating scrap or waste plastic and recycling it into other useful product.
As plastic is not an eco-friendly material, recycling it for further use is essential so that it will contribute to the global effort to save environment.
Following are the stages included in the process of recycling plastics
Plastic containers, bottles, jars, packaging plastic, plastic bags, and big industrial plastics are some of the types of plastic found everywhere.
The first step of the recycling process is to collect loads of scrap or waste plastic. These are then sent to a collecting yard. Next, the scrapes are packed and delivered to plastic processing plants.
Sorting of the dissimilar plastic items based on their resin color and content is the second step of the process. All pollutes are eradicated in this step. After sorting the plastics with the help of specially designed machines, the recycling mill categories the waste plastic on the basis of the symbols found underneath the plastics.
The sorted plastics are cut into miniscule chunks or flakes in the next step of the process. A specially designed machine then separates the heavier plastics flakes from the lighter ones. This step ensures that the different-sized plastics are not mixed up during the production of the final product.
In the fourth step, the chunks of plastics are cleaned using detergents so that the remaining pollutes are totally removed. The clean plastic flakes are then further separated based on the resin type with a specific equipment.
Next comes the step when the dry flakes of plastic are melted down. The melted plastics are either molded into a new shape or processed into pellets. Specific equipment are used with regulated temperatures to melt the plastic so that they don’t get destroyed in the process.
6. Making of pellets
This is the sixth step when the plastic pieces are trampled into miniscule pellets. These tiny pellets are typically known as nurdles. This is the stage when the plastic pellets are ready to be reshaped or restructured. An interesting fact is that the recycled plastic is hardly used to make an item that is identical to its previous form.
Types of recycled plastic
There are various types of recycled plastics that are providing opportunities for market players to invest and gain benefits from in the plastic recycling market. Let’s go through some of these.
Polyethylene Terephthalate is a type of recycled plastic which is rough with great level of lucidity. This type of plastic is strong and a perfect barrier of moisture and gas. This recycled plastic type is used for producing of bottles and jars of soft drinks, water, peanut butter and salad dressing bottles and jars.
High Density Polyethylene
Exceptional rigidity, versatility, strength, resistance to humidity, and reduced absorptivity to gas are the main properties of high-density Polyethylene. This type of plastic is also used in the manufacturing of milk, water, and juice bottles. Retail and trash bags are also made out of this type of plastic.
Polyvinyl chloride, abbreviated as PVC has a wide range of applications. PVC is versatile, stiff and flexible. Manufacturing of juice bottles, PVC piping, and cling films are some of the common usages of this type of plastic.
Low Density Polyethylene
Low density polyethylene is the most popular type of recycled plastic with the brilliant ease of processing. Flexible, strong, tough low density polyethylene is resilient to moisture and easier to cap. Frozen food bags, freezable bottles, and flexible container lids are made from this type of recycled plastic.
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