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The technology, which was developed at Purdue University, can convert more than 90% of polypropylene waste – a type of plastic that is commonly used for packaging and toys – into high-quality gasoline and diesel fuels in a matter of hours.
The conversion process uses selective extraction and hydrothermal liquefaction to turn the plastic into naphtha, a kind of flammable oil that can then be used as a feedstock for other chemicals or further separated into specialty solvents or other products.
The clean fuels derived from the plastic waste generated each year could satisfy 4% of the annual demand for gasoline or diesel fuels.
"Our strategy is to create a driving force for recycling by converting polyolefin waste into a wide range of valuable products, including polymers, naphtha, or clean fuels," said Linda Wang, a professor for chemical engineering at Purdue University and leader of the research team developing the technology. "Our conversion technol
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