Recycling of Multilayer Packaging Foils by using Diferent Organic Solvent

Document Type: Research Note

Authors

1 Kaunas University of Technology, Lithuania

2 1) Kaunas University of Technology,

3 Kaunas University of Technology

4 Kaunas University of Technology,

Abstract

Multilayer Packaging wastes are one of the major problem in the world. About 6 billion tons of packages are
generated per year in the world (in EU is about 82 million tons per year). Multilayer packaging foils are
approximately 17% of all produced packaging films. Most produced multilayer film is based on different
polymers, such as: polyethylene terephthalate (PET), polypropylene (PP), and polyethylene (PE) as main
components, and an aluminum layer. However, because of their poor recyclability, most multi layers are
usually incinerated or landfill, this is counteracting the efforts towards a circular economy. There are different
recycling methods for this type of waste, but the main problem is that there is less company which recycling
multilayer packaging foils. Also, it is very important that, mostly they recovering only one or two components
and others are burned or landfilled. The aim of this research was to find the most suitable solvent for recycling
multilayer packaging foils and recover two common components: polymer and Al foil. For the first experiment,
there was chosen multilayer packaging foil’s different samples, such as: packaging for chocolate, chips,
medicines and coffee. There was used several chemicals: acetic acid, acetone, dimethyl formamide, ethanol,
ethyl acetate and toluene. These solvents are on the list of green chemicals and they were selected, due to their
less impact on environment and human health. The recycling process and result was different for each
samples and solvents, because of their individual characteristics.