Have you ever wondered how plastic bottles are recycled?
Each year approximately 56 billion plastic bottles are generated in a large factories. These factories use a crazy amount of the world’s fossil fuel and crude oil. Only 20% of that 56 billion is recycled, the other 448,000,000,00 is in a landfill or floating around in the ocean.
Initially the bottles are transported in 700-1000 pound bales by trucks to the factories and are prepared to be handled by forklifts. Then the contaminants are separated from the other plastic bottles by the ultraviolet light.
Secondly the bottles are put into the grinder which has a rotary drum. Knives are placed to slice the bottles into ¼ inches that are screening device monitors. The cut pieces are called chips.
Thirdly the chips are then delivered to the paper separator. The continuous airflow separates the light paper label chips from plastic chips.
Next the plastic chips are then moved onto a conveyor that takes them to the water- bath, which a proprietary soap compound is added to 170 degree water that removes the remaining contaminates. The chips are then taken to the dewatering station. The dewatering station washes all the remaining soap off the chips. The chips are then moved to the rinse bath where the PET chips sink the the bottom and the polyethylene float to the top. The polyethylene is continuously taken off the top. The PET chips are then passed through to the heated dryer. FRom the heated dryer they are packaged and put on sale.
The PET chips can be made into carpet and clothes. Only 1 out of 6 of the bottles that are first delivered to the factories are sold as PET chips.
The cycle is a very precise process and is a very important process