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Quality assessment of recycled plastics
KTH, School of Chemical Science and Engineering (CHE), Fibre and Polymer Technology, Polymeric Materials.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-2139-7460
KTH, School of Chemical Science and Engineering (CHE), Fibre and Polymer Technology, Polymeric Materials.ORCID iD: 0000-0003-3572-7798
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2005 (English)Conference paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Polymers are subjected to physical and chemical changes during their processing and service life, and they may also interact with impurities that can alter their composition. These changes substantially modify the stabilization mechanisms and the mechanical properties of recycled polymers. Consequently, quality assessment is a matter of significant importance in order to guarantee a suitable employment of recycled plastic materials in further applications. Latest research has focused on the employment of new and reliable techniques for the characterization of recycled polyolefins and the determination of low molecular weight compounds contained in recycled materials.


Simulated recycling of polypropylene (PP), high density polyethylene (HDPE) and high-impact polystyrene (HIPS) was carried out in order to assess the changes occurring in the materials during repeated processing. The materials were also subjected to accelerated ageing so as to simulate their performance during service life. The samples were analysed with spectroscopic techniques, DSC (Differential Scanning Calorimetry) and tensile testing. Alterations in melt index were also investigated. Low-molecular weight compounds were extracted from the recycled plastics and analyzed by chromatographic techniques coupled with mass spectrometry. The results of the analyses were compared with corresponding data from recycled materials collected at industrial recycling centres so as to reach a deeper knowledge about the complex chemical composition and to assess the quality properties of recyclates.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Keyword [en]
Recycling, polyolefins, HIPS, quality assessment
National Category
Polymer Technologies
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-82309OAI: diva2:498112
5th Identiplast, Conference on the recycling and recovery of plastics
NQCAvailable from: 2012-02-11 Created: 2012-02-11 Last updated: 2012-02-28Bibliographically approved

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Strömberg, EmmaVilaplana, FranciscoKarlsson, Sigbritt
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