Visit the Mitsubishi Chemical Group at the K Show 2022, the world’s number one trade fair for plastics and rubber, to find out how our innovative specialty materials are empowering our customers to drive their transformation toward a more sustainable, recycling-oriented society.
PMMA, or acrylic, has been one of the world’s most commonly used plastics since its invention in the 1930s, used in everything from cars and homes to architecture and construction. Now, it’s moving into a fully circular future as Mitsubishi Chemical Methacrylates (MCM) drives a major recycling project.
In a global economy, complex supply chains can make it difficult to track information about the origin of materials. How do consumers know whether the product they’re buying comes from sustainable sources or contains recycled content? How can this be improved?
Mitsubishi Chemical partners with University of Nottingham to explore microwave PMMA recycling technology
TEESSIDE, England, Sep. 14, 2021 – Mitsubishi Chemical Corporation (MCC) is working with the University of Nottingham (UoN) to explore microwave technology for recycling polymethyl methacrylate (PMMA).
Following agreements announced in 2020 to build a circular economy solution for the material, the new partnership with UoN will further support MCC’s goal of identifying a range of complementary PMMA recycling technologies.
“As we work towards building a European recycling plant for PMMA, it is important that we consider all relevant potential technologies. We have already partnered with Agilyx Corporation to use their depolymerisation technology and we are keen to identify additional solutions that could complement the Agilyx process; microwave is one such technology” said David Smith, Circular Economy Lead, Mitsubishi Chemical Methacrylates. “Our aim is to develop the ultimate suite of recycling solutions for our customers, both in terms of efficiency and effectiveness. The partnership with UoN will help us to better understand how microwaves could help us meet this objective.”
UoN is a world-leading centre for microwave research and process development. “Microwave technology offers great potential to improve the quality of recycled product and enable further options for its reuse in PMMA manufacture, and will reduce the net energy usage” said Dr. John Robinson, Associate Professor, UoN.
“Working in partnership with Mitsubishi Chemical Methacrylates, we aim to develop a microwave process that will enable the use of renewable energy sources and reduce the overall number of steps required for PMMA recycling” said Dr. Eleanor Binner, Associate Professor, UoN.
About Mitsubishi Chemical Corporation
Mitsubishi Chemical Methacrylates, a division of Mitsubishi Chemical, is the global market leader in the production of MMA. For over 85 years, we have been focused on the methacrylate molecule – the building block of all acrylic materials. With operations across EMEA, APAC and the USA, our products benefit people’s lives worldwide. In everything we do, we work towards the sustainable well-being of people, society and our planet Earth – we call this KAITEKI.
Learn more about Mitsubishi Chemical Methacrylates at www.mcc-methacrylates.com
About the University of Nottingham
The University of Nottingham is a research-intensive university with a proud heritage. Studying at the University of Nottingham is a life-changing experience, and we pride ourselves on unlocking the potential of our students. We have a pioneering spirit, expressed in the vision of our founder Sir Jesse Boot, which has seen us lead the way in establishing campuses in China and Malaysia – part of a globally connected network of education, research and industrial engagement. Ranked 103rd out of more than 1,000 institutions globally and 18th in the UK by the QS World University Rankings 2022, the University’s state-of-the-art facilities and inclusive disability sport provision is reflected in its crowning as The Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide Sports University of the Year twice in three years, most recently in 2021. We are ranked eighth for research power in the UK according to REF 2014. We have six beacons of research excellence helping to transform lives and change the world; we are also a major employer and industry partner – locally and globally. Alongside Nottingham Trent University, we lead the Universities for Nottingham initiative, a pioneering collaboration which brings together the combined strength and civic missions of Nottingham’s two world-class universities and is working with local communities and partners to aid recovery and renewal following the COVID-19 pandemic.
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Dr. John Robinson
Dr. Eleanor Binner