June 6, 2023


Automotive and technology

Under the skin: Why glass half recycled is glass half full


Recycling as a great deal of a car as feasible when it, or pieces of it, arrive at the conclusion of life has been a priority for decades now, but a amazingly uncomfortable materials to recycle is a car’s windscreen.

A new, a single-calendar year pilot undertaking in between Audi and a number of companions from the glass producing small business is envisioned to improve that, but the activity isn’t really as basic as it sounds.

The most important ingredient of glass is silica sand, melted down with a handful of other additives. Until eventually now, recycled automotive windscreen glass has only been healthy for producing bottles and not been of substantial adequate high quality to satisfy the protection demands wanted for motor vehicle windscreens. A windscreen is laminated, a sandwich with glass getting the put of bread and polymer the filling, which is generally polyvinyl butyral (PVB).

After the two items of glass have been minimize and reheated on a mould to make the condition, the a few elements are pressed alongside one another and heated in an autoclave (a substantial stress cooker), bonding them together. A display may possibly also have good wire heating elements or an aerial and be outfitted with a rain sensor and interior mirror mount. All of these matters, plus the PVB, is what makes it so difficult to recycle it into pure-more than enough glass to reuse it as windscreen materials.

So how is the undertaking aiming to prevail over the challenge? Immediately after the cracked and broken screens have been collected at dealerships, a person of the venture companions, Reiling Glas Recycling, crushes the broken screens and uses magnets, non-ferrous steel separators, extraction models and electro-optical sorting models to clear away all the scrap. Following that, the glass granules go off to Saint-Gobain Glass, where it is separated by color.

To make new plate glass, the granules, which by then are as pure as attainable, are mixed with quartz sand, sodium carbonate and chalk (posh name: calcium carbonate). Of that, amongst 30% and 50% of the combination is composed of the recycled glass, but the venture workforce hopes to enhance on that as time goes on.

The uncooked substance is processed into massive rectangles of plate glass measuring 3m by 6m in advance of heading to an associate company, Saint-Gobain Sekurit, which turns it into automotive-quality glass. Recycling laminated security glass in this way is claimed to make 30% much less CO2 than starting up from scratch.

If the undertaking is thriving and the go-ahead is given to go into entire creation, Saint-Gobain Glass is setting up to course of action up to 30,000 tonnes of the crushed glass shards into higher-top quality automotive glass a year, some of which will be utilized in the Audi Q4 E-tron.

With that sum of materials remaining recycled, the glass maker claims it will preserve purely natural means, like h2o, and the electrical power personal savings will equate to a everyday reduction in CO2 emissions of 75 tonnes.


Resource url