Technological Advances in Mechanical Recycling Innovations and Corresponding Impacts on the Circular Economy of Plastics

Kunle Olufemi Babaremu*, Adedapo Adediji, Nmesoma Olumba, Silifat Okoya, Esther Akinlabi, Muyiwa Oyinlola

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

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Abstract

The impact of plastic pollution on the world and its inhabitants is yet to be fully measured. Significant quantities of microplastics and nanoplastics have been found in human organs, and many diseases have been traced to their presence. Even human placentas have been found to contain microplastics. This study examines the recycling landscape, advanced reprocessing techniques, and technical challenges in this industry. It points out the top recyclable types of plastics (such as high-density polyethylene, polyethylene terephthalate, and thermoplastic elastomers) by analyzing their different recycling capacities globally. It highlights the most advisable recycling techniques by identifying those most successful, least environmentally damaging, and easiest. Mechanical recycling is arguably the easiest and most common recycling technique. This study examines mechanical reprocessing technologies for construction materials, composite boards, additive manufacturing, and other applications. It also points out prevailing setbacks of these approaches and analyzes different solutions. Promising recycling processes are suggested for further investigation.
Original languageEnglish
Article number38
Number of pages21
JournalEnvironments
Volume11
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 21 Feb 2024

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