The process of sorting and recycling plastic components represents a formidable challenge. There are many varieties of resins, even though they may all look alike, which must be separated from each other and recovered before the recycling process can begin. PETEC has developed a high-precision resin sorting system which enables sorting and recovery by resin type at a high degree of purity. This is acheived by identifying the type of plastic through irradiation with a near-infrared beam. From mixed pieces of resin, three types of plastic—polypropylene, polystyrene, and ABS (acrylonitrile butadiene styrene)—are being accurately identified, sorted and recovered at over 99 percent purity.
The high-precision resin selection system using near-infrared identification technology
Resins extracted with high purity are conveyed to begin their new role as recycled materials
The high-purity recycled resources that have been extracted are reborn as “resources recycling-oriented products.” This recycled resin is being repurposed for internal parts in air conditioners, refrigerators and inductive heating (IH) cooking heaters. In another example, the vacuum insulation that uses glass wool recycled from television cathode-ray tubes (CRTs) is now being repurposed for components in new refrigerators.
By expanding these kinds of resources-recycling technologies from domestic use in Japan to the world at large, Panasonic aims to contribute to the achievement of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), and to the realization of a sustainable society.
17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)