Processability predictions for mechanically recycled blends of linear polymers

Janne van Gisbergen, Jaap den Doelder (Corresponding author)

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

Recycling of thermoplastic polymers is an important element of sustainable circular economy practices. The quality of mechanically recycled polymers is a concern. A method is presented to predict the structure and processability of recycled blends of polymers based on processability knowledge of their virgin precursor components. Blending rules at molecular weight distribution level are well established and form the foundation of the new method. Two essential fundamental building blocks are combined with this foundation. First, component and blend structure are related to viscosity via tube theories. Second, viscosity is related to melt flow index via a continuum mechanics approach. Emulator equations are built based on virtual experimental designs for fast forward and reverse calculations directly relating structure to viscosity and processability. The new combined method is compared with empirical blend rules, and shows important similarities and also clear quantitative differences. Finally, the new method is applied to practical recycling quality challenges.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)771-781
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Polymer Engineering
Volume40
Issue number9
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2020

Keywords

  • mechanical recycling
  • melt index
  • modeling
  • molecular weight distribution
  • viscosity

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