Polymer composite development from consumer electronic appliance housings

Rachit Mehta, Jennifer Lynch, Thomas Nosker

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

Abstract

Plastics from consumer electronic appliances (CEA plastics) are engineering-grade plastics, including acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS), polystyrene (PS), polycarbonate (PC), and PC/ABS blends. These common CEA plastics have excellent mechanical properties and could offer a valuable, recycled feedstock. In 2005, 2.8 billions pounds of CEA plastics were collected, but only 245 million pounds were recycled [2]. In the commercial sector, it is currently difficult for de-manufacturers to identify and sort CEA plastics. In a laboratory setting, Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy is a major technique used to identify unknown plastics when compared against a library of know plastics. The handheld FTIR spectrophotometer is a recent technology development that can be used in the de-manufacturing plant to quickly and efficiently identify CEA plastics. After creating a library of common CEA plastics, the handheld FTIR spectrophotometer was used in a de-manufacturing plant to identify and sort CEA plastics found in the collected waste stream. ABS was the most abundant CEA plastic collected. Thus, ABS was melt-blended with different concentrations of high-density polyethylene (HDPE) using a high compounding injection molding machine, and the mechanical properties and morphology characterized. Mechanical property results indicate that ABS/HDPE blends are sufficient for structural recycled plastic lumber applications, such as railroad ties, I-beams, and bridges. Structural recycled plastic lumber is an alternative for traditional chemically-treated wood lumber and requires less maintenance, is not subject to corrosion, has a longer lifespan, and is environmentally.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationANTEC 2015 - Proceedings of the Annual Technical Conference and Exhibition of the Society of Plastics Engineers
PublisherSociety of Plastics Engineers
ISBN (Electronic)9780985011277
StatePublished - 2015
Event73rd Annual Technical Conference and Exhibition of the Society of Plastics Engineers, SPE ANTEC Orlando 2015 - Orlando, United States
Duration: Mar 23 2015Mar 25 2015

Publication series

NameAnnual Technical Conference - ANTEC, Conference Proceedings

Other

Other73rd Annual Technical Conference and Exhibition of the Society of Plastics Engineers, SPE ANTEC Orlando 2015
CountryUnited States
CityOrlando
Period3/23/153/25/15

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Polymers and Plastics
  • Chemical Engineering(all)

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