Plastics Recycling Update

Variety of companies push forward additive solutions

The newly announced additives can improve various qualities of recycled plastics. | Mr_Mrs_Marcha/Shutterstock

Ampacet, ExxonMobil and other producers of additives that boost the quality of recycled plastics have made a number of announcements lately.

The following is a rundown of the details.

Homogenizing different polymers

New York-headquartered additive maker Ampacet has released a compatibilizer masterbatch called ReVive, which compatibalizes different polymers in multi-layer barrier films.

Jim Morrison, strategic business manager for flexibles at Ampacet, told Plastics Recycling Update the ReVive blend allows reclaimers to homogenize incompatible materials, such as nylon and/or EVOH with PE, at 3% to 5% letdown ratios.

“[ReVive] also provides for thermal stability during the multiple heat histories commonly experienced by recyclate,” he said.

According to a press release from the company, independent testing shows using 5% ReVive in a PE/nylon blend reduces haze from 55% to 18% and boosts gloss from 18 to 43 gloss units.

Stabilizer additive partnership

Additive manufacturer L. Brüggemann will refine, mass produce and distribute recycled polyolefin stabilizers developed by a German research institute.

The Heil­bronn, Germany-headquartered company will commercialize additives that reverse damage to recycled PE and PP caused when the plastic item was exposed to heat and light, according to Special Chem. Originally developed by scientists at the Fraunhofer Institute for Structural Durability and System Reliability, the technology allows the recycled plastic to be used in more demanding applications, according to Brüggemann.

“With its many years of comprehensive experience in the field of polymer additives and its worldwide market penetration, Brüggemann is the right partner to bring our ideas for the upcycling of plastics to market quickly,” Rudolf Pfaendner, head of the Plastics Division at Fraunhofer LBF, stated in a press release.

Boosting PP strength

Pennsylvania-based additive manufacturer Riverdale Global released the results of recent testing of its +Restore additive on post-consumer PP.

Working with a container packaging molder, the company tested the ability of the liquid additive to improve the properties of 100% post-consumer PP. According to a press release, regrind with 0.4% +Restore additive had flexural modulus at 99% of virgin PP, strain at yield at 89% of virgin PP and strain at break was actually greater than virgin PP, at 106%.

In terms of Izod impact strength, modified regrind was 16% below virgin PP, versus 49% below for unmodified regrind. According to the company, there is similarly encouraging data for using +Restore on HDPE.

Compatibilizing polyolefins

ExxonMobil, one of the world’s largest petrochemical companies, recently highlighted how its Vistamaxx polymers act as a compatibilizer between PE and PP, according to Rubber & Plastics News.

The company showcased Vistamaxx, which are propylene-based thermoplastic elastomers, at Plastex, which was held in Cairo in January. ExxonMobil said the additive can enhance toughness, cling, sealability, softness, clarity, dispersion, adhesion, elasticity and flexibility, according to the publication.

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