Waste to power: Scientists Create A ‘World First’ Method to Turn Plastic Waste into Electricity

By: | July 18th, 2019

Image courtesy Wikimedia

Considering the serious problem of plastic waste, researchers at University of Chester have discovered a revolutionary way to turn unrecyclable plastic waste into low carbon hydrogen fuel and electricity with zero plastic remaining. 

It is a ‘world first’ method which can make use of all types of dirty plastic and turn it into fuel which could be used to power cars and homes. Researchers from University of Chester helped Powerhouse Energy Group plc and Energy from Waste specialist Waste2Tricity (W2T) to develop this innovative technology.

Procedure of conversion:

  • Unsorted and unwashed plastic is cut into two-inch (5cm) long strips.
  • Plastics are then melted in sealed glass rotating kiln at 1,000°C.
  • Gases produced during this process, are then converted into energy.  

Howard White, deputy chairman of Waste2Tricity, said, “We are to have found a solution to the world’s waste plastic problem as we look to turn the plastic tap off in China, India and Asia – a zone which produces 90 per cent of the world’s ocean plastic.

“Cleaning up the oceans is all well and good, but we need to stop plastic waste from entering the ecosystem.

“The team at the University of Chester has helped us develop this technology, which will soon be ready for a large scale roll out to eliminate the bulk of ocean plastics and make low cost and low carbon dioxide hydrogen the go-to fuel for the future.”

Nidhi Goyal

Nidhi is a gold medalist Post Graduate in Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences.

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