The growing plastic waste problem has been highlighted by nature programmes like the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) War on Plastic series with the World Economic Forum (WEF) 2016 report estimating that by 2050, there could be more plastic than fish in the world's oceans. This has prompted the call for a shift from the linear model of tackling the plastic waste issue to that of a Circular Economy model with increasing demand for recycled resin to be incorporated into the plastic production process alongside virgin resin. However, recycled content are often associated with problems like lack of stability between various combinations of virgin/recycle polymers, which may lead to variations in temperature and inconsistency in the ease of flow attributable to the different temperature and pressure regimes under which virgin raw material and recycled feedstock melt and cool. In this paper, our main contribution is a proposed framework for integrating an enhanced AI/DB interface for analysing historical and real time information/data into a joint DSC-TGA system that allows for simultaneous quality control checks and thermal stability tests on different virgin-recycled resin mixing ratios. The database comes equipped with proven estimation methods, testing and statistical analysis results of different resin specimens to serve as a reference point for production engineers in arriving at desired check and test conditions. The information will be particularly useful to plastic product manufacturers when making decisions regarding the right virgin-recycled mix ratio conditions when using different batches of recycled resin or when they switch a supplier.
Getor, R. Y., Mishra, N., & Ramudhin, A. (2020). The role of technological innovation in plastic production within a circular economy framework. Resources, Conservation and Recycling, 163, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.resconrec.2020.105094