It began with a feasibility study on the subject of "Fish-box Recycling" in 2001.

In 2002, CreaCycle GmbH and the Fraunhofer Institute for Process Engineering and Packaging (IVV) in Freising decided to combine their competencies in a cooperation aimed at "Plastic/Material Recycling with a Solvent-based Technology (selective extraction)".

As result CreaCycle and Fraunhofer Institute IVV developed together the CreaSolv® Process, based on standard process technology (patented by Fraunhofer Institute). It is called Solvent-based Purification (synonym: Dissolution Recycling).

Proprietary CreaSolv® Formulations with the lowest risk potential possible for user and environment (ideally not to be classified according to GHS criteria) dissolve selectively the target polymer. This reduces besides the hazard also the cost for the equipment. After the cleaning from impurities the desired polymer precipitates when a special CreaSolv® Precipitation agent is added.

The volume of solvents used is very small in relation to the processed plastic (<1%), because the CreaSolv® Formulation is run in a closed-circuit.

2022.07.04 CreaSolv Process EN

  1. Dissolution - After sorting by polymer type the plastic waste is shredded and dissolved in a vessel with a tailored CreaSolv® Formulation.  The target polymer and  certain impurities dissolve.
  2. Cleaning - Insoluble impurities are separated to produce a clear solution.  The impurities will be waste-handled or can be recycled  if they contain valuable substances.
  3. Precipitation - By changing the solubility property of the solution only the polymer drops out and can be regained.
  4. Extrusion - The dried  recycled polymer is extruded into new polymer  granulates with similar properties like the virgin material, thus allowing it to be  used in the original application.
  5. Distillation (Purification) - The solution is collected and distilled  in order to recycle the CreaSolv® Formulation. The remaining insoluble impurities  are collected  to be waste-handled or recycled if they contain valuable substances.
  6. Regeneration - The recycled CreaSolv® Formulation  is again used for the dissolution of plastic waste.

2020.09.04 CreaSolv Process Animation YoutubeCreaSolv® Process Animation (video)

To play the video, please klick with the cursor on the picture.

Download CreaSolv® Process Infographic

 

 

Material Recycling / Physical Recycling

2022.07.04 Plastic recycling Value chain ENThe dissolution of plastic is a physical process, because the substance/material only changes its physical state from solid to liquid, and this can also be reversed again. It is for this reason why the CreaSolv® Process is classified as Material Recycling. It works like a washing machine on a molecular level.
The CreaSolv® Process does not fall into the class „Chemical Recycling“, but into Physical Recycling, because the chemical structure of the polymer chains remains unchanged, so that they can be reused. Chemical processes always produce new substances.

2022.07.04 phys. vs chem. Recycling englisch PMSony's Orange R-net process for recycling packaging EPS worked with solvent-based purification and was already used in Japan in the 1990s.
Solvay's Vinyloop® plant for recycling PVC cables had a capacity of 10,000 tons per year and operated in Italy from 2002 to 2018. Then it had to be closed because this technology was not designed to separate the now banned plasticizer DEHP.
It is therefore incomprehensible that there is still no industry standard or norm in which this solvent-based purification technology occurs, although there are several life cycle assessments for it that prove its usefulness.
In ISO 155270 Guideline for the Recovery and Recycling of Plastic Waste or EN 17615 Plastics - Environmental Aspects - Vocabulary one looks for it in vain and in the EU Taxonomy Report it is even wrongly classified as chemical recycling. -> see CreaSolv® Position paper

 

CreaSolv® Process: Applications and Polymers

Over the years, the CreaSolv® process has been successfully tested and modified for various plastics, applications and problems (a selection follows):

Multilayer packaging

  1. bioplastic - polylactide (PLA) -> SustRecPLA project
  2. polyethylene (PE) -> Unilever pilot plant
  3. PE, PP, BioPE, PA6, PET, BioPET -> MultiCycle project
  4. PE/PA, PP/PET -> Circular Packaging Project

Separation of brominated flame retardants

  1. EPS - Construction -> PolyStyreneLoop demo plant
  2. ABS, HIPS, PC – WEEE -> NONTOX project
  3. PE, PP - ELV -> NONTOX project

Separation of banned plasticizers

  1. PVC - Flooring -> Circular Flooring project

Fiber reinforced composites

  1. PA6, PUR, EP - divers -> ForCYCLE project
  2. PP, PA6.6, PA12, BioPA - ELV -> MultiCycle project

 Metal/Plastic composites

  1. PBT - WEEE -> ForCYCLE project
  2. ABS, PC, - ELV -> ForCYCLE project

Further application examples can be found in the menu (upper left) under Projects, sorted by application.

 

Life Cycle Assessments

2022.07.04 Dissolution LCAs EPS PVC EPS HBCDAs early as 2001, Sony published a life cycle assessment of the Orange R-net process for packaging EPS with 66% lower CO2 emissions than the production of virgin EPS. The commercial Vinyloop® process for PVC cables showed 47% lower energy consumption and 40% lower CO2 emissions compared to virgin production, according to a 2013 DEKRA life cycle assessment.

The life cycle assessments of the CreaSolv® Process for different polymers and applications also convince with a low CO2 footprint, similar to that of mechanical recycling.
To date, the following CreaSolv® Life cycle assessments are available:

Separation of brominated flame retardants.

  1. EPS - Construction - TÜV Rheinland (2017)   -> PolyStyreneLoop
  2. EPS - Construction - ifeu Institut (2019)       -> PolyStyreneLoop
  3. EPS - Construction - ifeu Institut (2022)       -> PolyStyreneLoop
  4. ABS, HIPS, PC - WEEE - UNIVAN (2021)      -> NONTOX
  5. PE, PP - ELV - UNIVAN (2022)                     -> NONTOX

Multilayer Packaging

6. PLA - Fraunhofer Umsicht (2019) -> SustRecPLA
7. PE - flow wraps                          -> MultiCycle

More information can be found in the given project pages by following the Link.

 

 

2017.06 Hess. Energiespar EPS Youtube 1Recycling of EPS Insulation waste, contaminated with persistent organic pollutants (HBCD).

Please click on picture to start video.

For more information please read about the PolyStyrene Loop Project - Link

 

2016 Forcycle Youtube 1Recycling of Metal-Plastic Compounds and Hybrid Materials.

Please click on picture to start video.

For more information please check the Forcycle Project (2014 - 2016) - Link

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