Emerson to provide digital technologies for plastics recycling

Emerson Automation Solutions

Monday, 09 August, 2021

Emerson to provide digital technologies for plastics recycling

Emerson has announced the signing of a multi-year agreement with PureCycle Technologies to provide advanced digital technologies and automation for a network of global facilities enabling large-scale recycling of a common — but rarely recycled — plastic.

Emerson’s Plantweb digital ecosystem was chosen to provide digital solutions, including intelligent sensors and control valves, operations software and systems, cloud data management and analytics.

“Unlike traditional manufacturing facilities coping with transforming legacy platforms to digital, PureCycle’s progressive approach will enable all future facilities to be born digital,” said Dustin Olson, Chief Manufacturing Officer of PureCycle Technologies. “With Emerson’s help, each PureCycle facility is expected to start up with the most advanced digital automation technologies available, allowing for faster project completion, fully integrated systems and world-class operating performance.”

Polypropylene, identified as resin recycling code #5, is one of the world’s most frequently produced, versatile and widely used plastics. Despite more than 77 billion kilograms being produced each year, less than 1% is reclaimed annually for recycling and reuse. Polypropylene is commonly used in the production of food and cosmetics packaging, toys and automobile parts, among other things.

“PureCycle’s first-of-its-kind technology purifies waste plastic to remove colour, odour and other contaminants to create a near-virgin ultra-pure recycled polypropylene suitable for nearly any application,” Olson said. “This provides a pathway to reverse low rates of global polypropylene recycling and opens new opportunities for the plastics supply into all polypropylene applications.”

“Sustainability is driving incredible innovation across the industry,” said Mike Train, Chief Sustainability Officer at Emerson. “New policies and long-range goals for decarbonisation give us vision and direction that are important to the industry and to society. Emerson’s digital automation software and technologies are helping companies like PureCycle make practical and measurable progress toward these goals today.”

Image: Mike Train, Chief Sustainability Officer with Emerson and Dustin Olson, Chief Manufacturing Officer with PureCycle Technologies.

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