Research in recycled materials

The use of recycled materials reduces global environmental impact, since fewer natural resources and less energy are employed when compared to production processes in which virgin materials are the norm.

The replacement of virgin material with recycled material is aligned with one of the basic concepts pursued in the Circular Economy: waste = resources. In Europe, waste is increasingly being recycled instead of being sent to landfill, thus reducing CO2 emissions and enabling components and materials to recirculate and continue contributing to the economy.

Besides its environmental benefits, the use of recycled materials also brings business opportunities. On one hand, companies can reduce procurement costs and on the other, they can improve their corporate image vis-à-vis consumers, who are more and more willing to buy sustainable products. In addition, the use of recycled materials can open up new markets, foster eco-innovation and prepare the company for compliance with future environmental regulations.

In AIMPLAS, we help companies to take advantage of the opportunities afforded by the use of recycled materials through the following lines of research:

  • Incorporation of plastic waste into non-plastic matrices.
  • Incorporation of non-plastic waste to plastic matrices.
  • Use of recycled material in contact with food.
  • Separation and recycling of complex waste.
  • Development and application of decontamination technologies to improve natural and recycled plastic materials: elimination of hazardous substances and/or odour reduction.
  • Improved recyclability of products and of the properties of recycled materials (fluidity, transparency, brightness, impact and odour).
  • Reduction and use of trimmings and production rejects.
  • Search for new market applications for recycled materials: automotive parts, construction elements, etc..
  • Chemical recycling of plastic materials (obtaining chemical products of interest from plastic waste).
  • Recycling of thermosetting plastics/elastomers.
  • Product recyclability studies.

Other lines of research