Closed-loop technology to provide cost-effective solution to create sustainable materials from automotive plastic waste
Eastman has entered a collaboration with the United States Automotive Materials Partnership (USAMP) and automotive recycler PADNOS for a concept feasibility study to demonstrate a closed-loop project to recycle automotive industry mixed plastic waste in the automotive supply chain.
When automobiles are at the end of their life, metals, tires, and glass account for 80-90 percent of the materials that can be recycled through traditional mechanical recycling streams. The other 10-20 percent, referred to as automotive shredder residue (ASR), consists of mixed plastic and other non-recycled materials that currently end up in landfills or are recovered through waste-to-energy technologies. Under this initiative, PADNOS will use ASR as a sustainable feedstock for Eastman's molecular recycling process, creating a circular solution.
The study will also assess how well Eastman's carbon renewal technology (CRT), one of Eastman's two molecular recycling technologies, breaks down the plastic-rich fraction of ASR into molecular building blocks. By recycling these complex plastics in CRT, Eastman can replace fossil-based feedstock and create polymers without compromising performance for use in new automotive applications.
"This 12-month automotive recycling project with Eastman and PADNOS is part of USAMP's broad materials research and sustainability program," said Steve Zimmer, executive director of USCAR. "Programs like this are critical to establishing a cost-effective pathway for addressing challenges associated with the consumption of ASR back into automotive parts to enable true industry circularity."