Distinguishing between HDPE and LDPE at the blink of an eye

By launching two applications for its mobile NIR spectroscopy solution, trinamiX is improving on-the-spot sorting of the sought-after plastic.
TrinamiX launches two new PE applications for its Mobile NIR Spectroscopy Solution. Photo: BASF

In addition to quickly distinguishing between HDPE and LDPE, the ratio of PE to PP in mixed plastics can be precisely determined as easy as pushing a button. Thanks to the flexibility of a handy measuring device, the process for obtaining high-quality PE and PE/PP recyclates is now significantly enhanced.

Polyethylene (PE) is the most widely produced plastic in the world and the most popular thermoplastic for foils and packaging. Depending on its density, PE can be divided into HDPE (high-density polyethylene) and LDPE (low-density polyethylene). While the similar characteristics of HDPE and LDPE lead to overlaps in their respective applications, differences in their mechanical properties have an impact on their processing and the subsequent recycling process. In the context of recycling, a separation by type has a favorable effect on the quality of the recyclate.

Also, trinamiX’s solution now provides valuable insights when it comes to the recovery of mixed plastics made of PE and PP. By determining the percentage ratio in PE/PP mixed plastics, recyclers can sort incoming commodity streams with greater precision. This way, the different specifications and quality requirements of the recyclates can be attained more accurately.

“The current undersupply in the PE market and the associated price increases we’re observing on our digital trade platform are opening up new opportunities for recycling companies,” explains Florian Hüter, Head of Sales at cirplus, the global marketplace for circular plastics. “trinamiX’s applications make their sorting process for the different commodity streams fast and easy, thereby increasing their recycling capacities for PE recyclates.”


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