Reprocessing of polymer blends from WEEE: A methodology for predicting embrittlement
Article dans une revue avec comité de lecture
For recycling purposes, the thermal degradation of post-consumed (pc) ABS/HIPS and PP/PE blends derived from waste electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE) was obtained by multiple extrusions. The evolution of molar mass (Mw), melt flow index (MFI), and ultimate elongation (εr) of reprocessed blends was evaluated as a function of extrusion cycles. The degradation mechanism of ABS/HIPS blends corresponds to a random chain scission as indicated by a diminution of εr correlated to an increase in MFI and decrease in Mw after 30 cycles of extrusion. The same type of degradation mechanism occurs on the PP/PE blend as shown by the drop in Mw and thus an increase in MFI by a factor of six but only after 11 cycles, thus suggesting the higher thermomechanical resistance of ABS/HIPS. The beginning of the critical molar mass for embrittlement (M'c) zone was reached around 130 and 200 kg/mol for ABS/HIPS and PP/PE, respectively, which can be related to the beginning of the critical MFI zone around 12 and 63 g/10 min (230 °C/2.06 kg), respectively. As a result, we propose an innovative embrittlement criterion using MFI measurements that allow a quick and easy analysis of post-consumed polymer blends.
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