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Filler Recycling

Recycling is the ultimate way of improving sustainability but is proving to be hard to achieve.

Types of Filler Recycling

Particulate fillers can be considered as being recycled in several ways.

  • • Conversion of end of life, or off-specification, products from other applications into particulate fillers. Glass powders from end of life containers or glass fiber are good examples.
  • • As a powder recovered from, and returned to, a polymer application. Pyrolysis carbon blacks are a good example of this.

Table 2 The main particulate fillers in use and their estimated global consumption: (all polymer types)

Filler

Approximate world consumption (tons)

Issues to be considered with finding substitutes

Ground natural carbonates

11,000,000

Low cost and relatively low hardness

Carbon black

10,000,000

Very small size and controlled shape

Kaolin

1,400,000

Low cost and platy in shape

Talc

800,000

Very soft and platy in shape

Precipitated silica

800,000

Very small size and controlled shape

Aluminum

hydroxide

725,000

Flame retardant properties required

• As part of a filled system that is being recycled. Carbon black in crumb rubber recyclate and carbonates in PVC are good examples of this.

 
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