Morgantown, West Virginia
March 27, 2020
March 27, 2020
May 20, 2020
Abstract: Recycling of Post-Consumer Resin (PCR) Plastics While many plastics are recyclable, most single-use plastic products live out their end of life in the ocean, on the side of the road, or in landfills. This senior capstone project sought to create a simple process to reprocess single-use plastic waste. The process included methods for cleaning, sorting, and grinding plastic waste to make new injection molded products. Following extensive research on current plastic compositions and characteristics suitable for recycling, collection bins were placed throughout the cafeteria at the engineering college to gather used plastic utensils as well as pizza savers. Creative methods for cleaning food waste from collected items required design and fabrication of a new part for a donated dishwasher. This multidisciplinary senior design project pulled skills and experience from team members’ undergraduate programs as well as student professional organizations such as the Society of Plastics Engineers. Using knowledge and techniques gained, the team developed an efficient process to create injection molded flying discs made out of 100% recycled polypropylene (PP) single-use plastic food items that students had previously simply thrown away. The injection molding cavities used had been developed in a previous senior capstone project that had created flying discs; these flying discs are now used by the college to interest visiting K-12 students in engineering and in the university. The end goal for this project was not only to divert a fair amount of the college’s plastic waste from ending up in a landfill, but to create a process going forward to educate and excite students and guests about recycling.
Lacy, A. E., & Nottingham, E., & Aller, B. M., & Engelmann, P. V. (2020, March), Recycling of Post-Consumer Resin (PCR) Plastics: A Capstone Project to Reduce Waste and Promote Future Recycling Paper presented at 2020 ASEE North Central Section conference, Morgantown, West Virginia. https://peer.asee.org/35744
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