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Recycling

Products such as the frame of this Trek Madone could find new life, as Trek Bicycle begins...

Carbon fiber may boast an impressive strength-to-weight ratio, and it looks cool, but it does have at least one shortcoming when compared to other building materials – it's difficult to recycle. Nonetheless, Trek Bicycle has begun a program that will see much of the company's waste carbon fiber being sent to a specialized recycling facility, where it will be processed for use in other products. According to the Cyclingnews website, the initiative should keep up to 54,000 pounds (24,500 kg) of the material out of landfills and in use, every year.  Read More

ZenRobotics staff, with the Recycler robot's picking hand(All images courtesy ZenRobotics)...

Standing around, sorting debris from construction or demolition projects for recycling ... it probably isn't anyone's idea of a good time. Given the risks posed by sharp or heavy objects and airborne particles, it's not a particularly safe way of making a buck either. That's where, perhaps someday soon, ZenRobotics' Recycler autonomous waste-sorting robot arm will come into play.  Read More

PepsiCo says it has developed the world's first 100 percent plant-based PET bottle

Mountain Dew’s green bottles could become even “greener” with an announcement from PepsiCo claiming it has developed the world’s first polyethylene terephthalate (PET) plastic bottle made entirely from plant-based, fully renewable resources including switch grass, pine bark and corn husks. The bottle not only offers a significantly reduced carbon footprint compared to petroleum-based PET, but is also 100 percent recyclable.  Read More

Frogboxes are reusable plastic moving boxes, that users rent in the city they're moving fr...

Jerry Seinfeld once commented that when you’re moving, your whole life becomes centered around finding cardboard boxes. While some moving companies will sell boxes to you, after the move you’re then stuck with them, and end up either recycling them after just one use, or filling your basement/garage/attic with the things. If you don’t want to scrounge for free boxes or waste the ones you get, however, there is now an alternative – you can rent some reusable polyethylene Frogboxes.  Read More

Shredded and densified boom material, post-consumer plastic, and recycled tires are all go...

During the course of this year’s Gulf Oil Spill, a lot of media attention was paid to the oil booms used to contain and/or absorb the surface slick. While a small percentage of the sausage-shaped tubes of netting were stuffed with unusual materials such as hair, most of them contained oil-absorbent polypropylene. Now that the Deep Horizon well has been capped, the question of what to do with all that oily plastic arises. It turns out that some of it will find its way into Chevrolet Volts.  Read More

Prof. Jan Baeyens with plastic for the fluidized bed reactor (Photo: University of Warwick...

This Christmas, chances are you’ll save the plastic film and blister packs that your presents come encased in and send it all off for recycling. According to scientists from the University of Warwick, however, only about 12 percent of plastic sent to depots actually gets recycled. Because of problems such as glued-on paper labels, or different types of plastic being combined in one product, the rest of it goes to the landfill or is burnt as fuel. Those same scientists have now devised a system that could recycle 100 percent of household plastic.  Read More

A boll of cotton matures in the field  (Texas AgriLife Research photo by Kathleen Phillips...

Cotton has held an important significance for mankind for thousands of years. Not only are all parts of the cotton plant economically useful, but the multitude of uses and processes it can be put to make it America's number one value-added crop. Over the years we have crushed and extruded and woven cotton into many forms, but even today scientists and entrepreneurs are transforming the way we use cotton; from reducing pollution, insulating homes, and cleaning up oil spills to feeding the hungry. Here's a look at seven new companies being championed for their sustainability by Cotton Incorporated.  Read More

A good breakdown ... author of the thesis on using a technique called pyrolisis to decompo...

The world practically runs on pneumatic tires, but getting rid of them is an environmental nightmare. Apart from playground flooring material, running tracks for athletes and horses and unfashionable footwear, disposing of or reusing tires has proven to be extremely problematic (remember the Osborne artificial reef off Ft Lauderdale, Florida, made from old tires? It became an environmental disaster and had to be removed by the US Military). Now a scientist at the University of Basque Country, Spain, has used the process of pyrolisis to decompose and reuse the left-over components of pneumatic tires.  Read More

Stanford's simple-to-disassemble Bloom laptop concept is designed for easy recycling

It’s a given that we will one day be discarding our present laptop computers. It’s also a given that e-waste is currently a huge problem, that looks like it’s only going to get worse. While most of the materials in a laptop can be recycled, all of those pieces of glass, metal, plastic and circuitry are stuck together pretty tight, and require a lot of time and effort to separate. What is needed are laptops that are designed to be taken apart, for easy recycling – that’s why a group of graduate students from Stanford University made one.  Read More

The University of Michigan Cardiovascular Center is examining the legality and basic logis...

Despite ongoing advances in prevention techniques and monitoring systems, heart disease remains the world’s leading cause of death. A study from the University of Michigan (U-M) Cardiovascular Center has looked to the past for a future remedy in a study that examines the legality and basic logistics of recycling pacemakers after they have been removed from a deceased person.  Read More

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