Recycling of plastic materials is an important topic, driven by commercial and environmental influences. Pressures on landfill capacity and other concerns such as legislation or regulations have caused the plastics industry to pay much greater attention to the recycling of heterogeneous plastic waste. Separation and cleaning techniques have been developed along with the means of reusing recycled material. The latter sometimes give variable compositions and poorer properties, but additives can be used to improve the properties of recycled polymers. Blending of recycled polymers may also help to improve the properties of the materials.
Furthermore the conditions of the recycling process can have significant impact on the properties of the recycled polymer. Polypropylene packaging containers or fibres can be recycled into new products or alternatively can be incinerated to produce energy. It has been found that mechanical recycling is the best recovery option for large PP automotive components, while energy recovery is the solution for most small plastic parts.
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