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PolyUrethane Recycling towards a Smart Circular Economy

PolyUrethane Recycling towards a Smart Circular Economy

Objective

Thermosetting Polyurethanes (PU) provide a unique combination of durability, light weight, high strength and flexibility to high value consumer goods and other applications. PU thermosets have grown to a global market of 50 billion €, ultimately resulting in high volumes of waste mostly disposed via landfill or incineration as the SOA of the recycling technology is limited. PUReSmart will bridge the gap between the current PU linear economy to a circular model by designing smart polyurethane materials that can be reshaped into new products with undiminished quality. PUReSmart will provide solutions for the identified three scientific-technological urgent needs that require conceptual breakthroughs:
1) Smart DESIGN of covalent adaptable polyurethanes (CAPU) to bridge the gap between thermosets and thermoplastics, thanks to thermally reversible bonds; these CAPU are reprocessable, similarly to thermoplastics.
2) Smart SORTING, using the unique spectroscopic fingerprints of conventional PU and smart building blocks to create a validated and cost effective PU sorting platform with high specificity and sensitivity; this enables driving CAPUs to reprocessing and PU to chemolysis.
3) Smart CHEMOLYSIS with mass balanced and minimized input of virgin chemicals, maximal purity and efficient isolation of the obtained building blocks resulting in full re-utilization of all obtained fractions for PU or CAPUs;
PUReSmart will integrate CAPU chemistry with monomers obtained by next-generation chemolysis processes, using well-sorted feedstocks, aiming at scalable industrial products (TRL 5) with social and economic value assessed by a Life Cycle Analysis for ‘cyclic’ PU.
The project encompasses a concerted effort of partners along the value- and revalorization chain: PU producers, producers of the building blocks, technology providers for physical sorting, and research institutions focusing on design of new PU types and on innovative chemolysis methods for existing PU types.
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Coordinator

RECTICEL SA

Address

Avenue Des Olympiades 2
1140 Bruxelles

Belgium

Activity type

Other

EU Contribution

€ 1 214 803,75

Participants (8)

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UNIVERSITEIT GENT

Belgium

EU Contribution

€ 700 112,50

COVESTRO DEUTSCHLAND AG

Germany

EU Contribution

€ 1 064 400

WEYLCHEM INNOTEC GMBH

Germany

EU Contribution

€ 536 568,75

UNIVERSIDAD DE CASTILLA - LA MANCHA

Spain

EU Contribution

€ 408 318,75

KATHOLIEKE UNIVERSITEIT LEUVEN

Belgium

EU Contribution

€ 589 358,75

ECOINNOVAZIONE SRL

Italy

EU Contribution

€ 409 261,25

BT-WOLFGANG BINDER GMBH

Austria

EU Contribution

€ 866 250

AYMING

France

EU Contribution

€ 209 500

Project information

Grant agreement ID: 814543

Status

Ongoing project

  • Start date

    1 January 2019

  • End date

    31 December 2022

Funded under:

H2020-EU.2.1.3.

H2020-EU.2.1.2.

  • Overall budget:

    € 5 998 573,75

  • EU contribution

    € 5 998 573,75

Coordinated by:

RECTICEL SA

Belgium