High-Density Polyethylene, usually shortened to HDPE pipe fittings, is actually a plastic polymer with flexible properties which can make it well suited for a wide range of applications.
High-density polyethylene, since the name suggests, features a higher specific density than low-density polyethylene, though this difference is only marginal. What really helps make the difference from the physical properties of HDPE is the absence of branching, meaning it can be light with a high tensile strength. As there is no branching the structure is a lot more closely packed, make HDPE a linear polymer. The branching could be controlled and reduced by utilizing specific catalysts during production.
HDPE has several advantageous properties making it crucial in the manufacturing of numerous products. HDPE carries a comparatively high density in comparison with other polymers, by using a specific gravity of .95. HDPE is comparatively hard and immune to impact and will be subjected to temperatures up to 120oC without getting affected.
These durable properties allow it to be great for heavy-duty containers and HDPE is primarily utilized for milk containers, along with Tupperware, shampoo bottles, bleach bottles and motor oil bottles. Also, HDPE does not absorb liquid readily, so that it is good barrier material for liquid containers. Almost still another (about eight million tons) of HDPE produced worldwide can be used for most of these containers.
Furthermore HDPE is an extremely resistant material to a lot of chemicals, hence it widespread utilize in healthcare and laboratory environments. It is immune to many acids, alcohols, aldehydes, esters, bases and oils.
HDPE is accepted at many recycling centres on earth, mainly because it is amongst the easiest plastic polymers to recycle. Most recycling companies will collect HDPE products and take these to large facilities to get processed.
First, the plastic is sorted and cleaned, to eliminate any unwanted debris. The plastic then should homogenised, in order that only HDPE will likely be processed. If there are other plastic polymers within the batch, this could ruin the recycled end-product.
HDPE includes a specific density of .93 to .97 g/cm3. This is much lower than that of PET which happens to be 1.43-1.45 g/cm3, which means these plastic polymers may be separated by utilizing sink-float separation. However, HDPE pipe fittings includes a similar specific density to PP, meaning the sink-float separation should not be used. In this case, Near Infrared Radiation (NIR) techniques can be used, unless the plastic is simply too dark and absorbs the infrared waves.
HDPE will then be shredded and melted to further refine the polymer. The plastic is going to be cooled into pellets which can be utilized in manufacturing.
Recycling plants may also make use of using a baler, which may compress the post-consumer waste to minimise energy found in transport.
Small steps at home may also be come to recycle HDPE. In terms of milk bottles, these may be easily reused if washed out thoroughly first. To minimize packaging waste, buying plastic containers in bulk can be another good option.
Equally, carrier bags may also be reused when going shopping. Many large supermarkets offer collection points for used carrier bags to get recycled. Some plastic films consist of a message to recycle these with carrier bags at the supermarket and not to leave ‘kerbside’.
Recycling of HDPE is aided through the resin code on the product, that is an indiscriminate number assigned to different plastic polymers to aid separate plastics in the recycling stage. The resin identification code for high-density polyethylene is ‘2’.
The Environmental Benefits associated with Recycling HDPE
The worldwide industry for HDPE is big, using a market volume of around 30million tons per year.
The quantity of plastic used in plastic bags has reduced by around 70% within the last twenty years on account of the introduction of reusable canvas bags and using biodegradable materials, but dexqpkyy02 most of bags remain made out of PEX-AL-PEX pipe. Furthermore, there exists a growing industry for HDPE containers in China and India as a result of increased standards of living, in addition to a higher need for HDPE pipes and cables because of rapidly growing industries.
HDPE is non-biodegradable and may take centuries to decompose, so it will be imperative that these bags and containers are recycled and used again.
Recycling HDPE has several benefits. For example, it really is more cost efficient to produce a product from recycled HDPE than it is to produce ‘virgin’ plastic.
HDPE, like many plastic polymers, is produced using considerable amounts of energy sources and it also takes a total of 1.75kg of oil to produce just 1kg of HDPE.