Scientists turned plastic bottles into valuable raw materials using light 19:38

Australian scientists from the University of Adelaide have developed a way to turn plastic containers and other polyethylene products into valuable raw materials for the chemical industry. The reaction takes place at room temperature. The study was published in the scientific journal magazine Science Advances (SciAdv).

“We converted polyethylene plastic waste into ethylene and propionic acid with high selectivity using atomically dispersed metal catalysts,” said project leader Professor Shizhang Qiao.

Photocatalysis with oxidative coupling using sunlight at room temperature was used to convert polyethylene into valuable products. Non-toxic titanium dioxide with palladium atoms was used as the catalyst.

Almost 99% of the material resulting from decomposition is plastic, medicine, herbicide, aromatic, solvent, etc. Propionic acid was used in its production.

According to the authors of the development, the proposed method is less energy-intensive compared to the common chemical processing of polyethylene waste, which is carried out at temperatures above 400 ° C and leads to the formation of products of complex composition. Complex compounds are difficult to use as secondary sources without additional processing.

Previously in Russia developed An environmentally friendly method for recycling contaminated plastic waste.

Source: Gazeta


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