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Solvent dissolution for PET

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Technology Description

Solvent is used to separate out the polymer, which is then purified in a liquid state (similar to purifying drinking water). The polymer is not depolymerised (broken into its component monomers), but rather purification removes colour, odour and contaminants from plastic waste in order to extract a virgin-quality polymer.

Relevance for Net Zero

Improved recycling would help reduce the need for virgin production and can reduce downcycling in which a material is recycled into a lower value end. However, behavioural barriers also need to be overcome to increase plastics collection rates, and secondary production is unlikely to ever fully replace the need for primary production.

Key Countries

United Kingdom, Switzerland

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