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Article

Recycling Potential for Non-Valorized Plastic Fractions from Electrical and Electronic Waste

1
Fraunhofer Institute for Process Engineering and Packaging IVV, Process Development for Polymer Recycling, 85354 Freising, Germany
2
TUM School of Life Sciences Weihenstephan, Technical University of Munich, 85354 Freising, Germany
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Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Michele John and Francesco Paolo La Mantia
Received: 2 April 2021 / Revised: 14 May 2021 / Accepted: 14 May 2021 / Published: 19 May 2021
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Polymer Recycling)
This paper describes a study for waste of electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE) to characterise the plastic composition of different mixed plastic fractions. Most of the samples studied are currently excluded from material recycling and arise as side streams in state-of-the-art plastics recycling plants. These samples contain brominated flame retardants (BFR) or other substances of concern listed as persistent organic pollutants or in the RoHS directive. Seventeen samples, including cathode ray tube (CRT) monitors, CRT televisions, flat screens such as liquid crystal displays, small domestic appliances, and information and communication technology, were investigated using density- and dissolution-based separation processes. The total bromine and chlorine contents of the samples were determined by X-ray fluorescence spectroscopy, indicating a substantial concentration of both elements in density fractions above 1.1 g/cm3, most significantly in specific solubility classes referring to ABS and PS. This was further supported by specific flame retardant analysis. It was shown that BFR levels of both polymers can be reduced to levels below 1000 ppm by dissolution and precipitation processes enabling material recycling in compliance with current legislation. As additional target polymers PC and PC-ABS were also recycled by dissolution but did not require an elimination of BFR. Finally, physicochemical investigations of recycled materials as gel permeation chromatography, melt flow rate, and differential scanning calorimetry suggest a high purity and indicate no degradation of the technical properties of the recycled polymers. View Full-Text
Keywords: polymer; WEEE; recovery; density; dissolution; CreaSolv®; brominated flame retardants (BFR) polymer; WEEE; recovery; density; dissolution; CreaSolv®; brominated flame retardants (BFR)
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MDPI and ACS Style

Strobl, L.; Diefenhardt, T.; Schlummer, M.; Leege, T.; Wagner, S. Recycling Potential for Non-Valorized Plastic Fractions from Electrical and Electronic Waste. Recycling 2021, 6, 33. https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/recycling6020033

AMA Style

Strobl L, Diefenhardt T, Schlummer M, Leege T, Wagner S. Recycling Potential for Non-Valorized Plastic Fractions from Electrical and Electronic Waste. Recycling. 2021; 6(2):33. https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/recycling6020033

Chicago/Turabian Style

Strobl, Laura, Thomas Diefenhardt, Martin Schlummer, Tanja Leege, and Swetlana Wagner. 2021. "Recycling Potential for Non-Valorized Plastic Fractions from Electrical and Electronic Waste" Recycling 6, no. 2: 33. https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/recycling6020033

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