Recycled plastics as a sustainable solution

Why should I use recycled plastics?

Some plastics are 100% recyclable and can be integrated into the material cycle again and again. The offcuts and residual materials are processed into semi-finished products in the form of sheets and the need for new resources is reduced. The use of recycled semi-finished products influences the entire supply chain and represents an enormous reduction in raw material and energy requirements. Making a conscious decision to use recycled materials in appropriate applications is one of the first approaches to promote sustainability in companies. Another advantage of recycled plastics is that they are cheaper than new material and the right use helps to reduce purchasing costs.

Where you can use recycled plastics and where you should not.

Recycled plastics can be used, for example, for driving plates, underlay plates, impact protection strips and concrete formwork. In principle, recycled plastics can be used for simple wear parts without high technical requirements. The areas of application are numerous, but it should be checked before use whether the technical properties of recycled plastics are suitable for the area. This is because after recycling, the technical properties of the plastics may differ from virgin materials. When deciding, it is also necessary to consider whether to use pure material (only PE-1000) or to use mixed materials (for example, PE-500 with PE-1000) for recycling. Even if the cost of recycled material is cheaper, we always recommend to check the technical properties and the field of application in order to avoid later problems in operation, e.g. in plants. Regenerates can be produced by compounding, which are plastic recyclates that have better properties with the help of additives.

Colours of recycled plastics.

With recycled plastics, it's usually about the sustainable efficiency of getting enough material together than the look of the material. Therefore, plastic scraps with different colors are often mixed together, ground and re-extruded or pressed. This principle is used to create the well-known confetti plastic semi-finished products. In this process, the semi-finished products have a color tendency towards the original material with the higher proportion. The color of the final product is therefore random. Alternatively, it is possible to dye confetti plastics in black during processing, as this color covers all others. In this way, uniform black semi-finished products can be made from recycled plastics. Apart from confetti, of course, if there are enough leftover plastics, they can be recycled with the same color to obtain a uniform color pattern.

Types of Recycled Plastics

  • Recyclate is an umbrella term; it is a molding compound or a processed plastic with defined properties. In many cases, the recyclate is mixed into virgin material. In general, a recyclate has already undergone a processing stage. A masterbatch or a blend produced from several plastics by reprocessing, i.e. by a processing operation, are not considered to be recyclates.

  • Regrind is obtained by grinding plastic. Regrind has varying and irregular particle sizes ranging from 2 mm to 5 mm and may contain dust particles.

  • Regranulate is obtained from regrind via a melting process as granulate. Regranulate has uniform particle size and no dust content and can be processed without problems.

  • Regenerate is obtained by a melting process (compounding) with the addition of additives to improve properties. Regrind has a uniform particle size and no dust content and, if necessary, defined property values.