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New Zealand Science Teacher


New way to recycle plastic waste

If utilised correctly, new technology could improve lives and our environment forever.

A team of scientists in Calicut, India, has developed a way to turn plastic waste into cooking gas without creating pollution.

The group, led by Lisa Sreejith, associate professor, Department of Chemistry, National Institute of Technology, Calicut, and N. Sitaraman, retired chemistry professor, achieved this through a thermochemical decomposition of the shredded waste plastic at an elevated temperature in the absence of oxygen.

Unlike other plastic recycling systems, no component of the material remains after the transforming process. The scientists have worked with a wide range of plastics, including polythene, bottles, and bags.

The next step according to the scientists is to set up a plant that can process 100 tonnes of plastic waste daily. The team says 750 litres of gas can be extracted from 4kgs of plastic, and in addition, costly chemicals used in the production of plastics can be extracted.

The scientists have applied for funding from various Indian government agencies, and the patent filing process is underway.

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  • As his students - we are so proud of our Prof Sitaram. So much good to the environment.. I hope this project gets the funding and soon becomes a reality.

    Posted by Suja, 01/10/2013 9:45pm (6 years ago)

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