New foundation to support recovery of brominated EPS / Demo plant to go on stream by 2018
As its contribution to the European circular economy, the new non-profit Dutch-based PolyStyrene Loop foundation plans to build a demonstration plant for sustainable recycling of end-of-life EPS containing the flame retardant HBCDD in Terneuzen / The Netherlands by 2018. The recycling initiative, which has invited other styrenics industry players to join, said the objective is to provide an additional or alternative end-of-life option to incineration, especially as the number of incinerators in Europe is limited, and not all can handle all types of waste. The demo plant will work with EPS waste from demolition projects or, alternatively, with existing waste streams.

At a kick-off meeting for the recycling initiative in Terneuzen, attended by representatives of EPS producers and recyclers as well as Dutch national and provincial authorities, the industry stakeholders agreed to pursue further development of the “Solvolysis” technology tailored and advanced by Germany’s Fraunhofer Institute for Process Engineering and Packaging (IVV, Freising; This is said to be suitable for treating mixed and contaminated waste. Among other features, it allows separation of legacy additives from target polymers.

To review the bromine component of the project, the meeting’s participants toured the Bromine Recovery Unit (BRU) operated by the European arm of ICL Industrial Products (Tel Aviv / Israel; www. Since 2002, the world’s largest bromine producer has operated a plant using its proprietary solvent-based polymer recycling process “CreaSolv” to dissolve PS from EPS waste. The recycling process is subsequently carried out in a closed loop. Its customers’ waste streams containing bromine salts are treated and reprocessed into new products, thus closing the bromine loop.

Management of the EPS recycling project will consist of a core team – comprised of the founders of the initiative – Sunpor Kunststoff (St. Pölten / Austria;, Synbra Technology (Etten-Leur / The Netherlands;, ICL IP Europe (Amsterdam / The Netherlands; and the European EPS industry association EUMEPS (Brussels / Belgium; as well as Fraunhofer – in collaboration with supporting teams, each of which will focus on essential elements. Four separate working groups will cover one topic each: waste handling legal framework; logistics costs; detail engineering for the demo plant; and funding options.

The initiators, who hope to receive EU funding, believe that by using the Sololysis process, the demonstration work will have an immediate positive cash generation.
25.11.2015 [232726-0]
Published on 25.11.2015
EPS: Brancheninitaitive plant Bau einer Demo-RecyclinganlageGerman version of this article...

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