$2.5 trillion 'Holy Grail' found? Breakthrough discovery could lead to 100 percent recyclable plastics, scientists say

Posted by  $  mminnick 2 months, 1 week ago to Science
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Plastic pollution in the world's oceans may have a $2.5 trillion impact, negatively affecting "almost all marine ecosystem services," including areas such as fisheries, recreation and heritage. But a breakthrough from scientists at Berkeley Lab could be the solution the planet needs for this eye-opening problem – recyclable plastics.
The study, published in Nature Chemistry, details how the researchers were able to discover a new way to assemble the plastics and reuse them "into new materials of any color, shape, or form."
“Most plastics were never made to be recycled,” said lead author Peter Christensen, a postdoctoral researcher at Berkeley Lab’s Molecular Foundry, in the statement. “But we have discovered a new way to assemble plastics that takes recycling into consideration from a molecular perspective.”
Known as poly(diketoenamine), or PDK, the new type of plastic material could help stem the tide of plastics piling up at recycling plants, as the bonds PDK forms are able to be reversed via a simple acid bath, the researchers believe.
"Poly(diketoenamine)s ‘click’ together from a wide variety of triketones and aromatic or aliphatic amines, yielding only water as a by-product," the study's abstract reads. "Recovered monomers can be re-manufactured into the same polymer formulation, without loss of performance, as well as other polymer formulations with differentiated properties. The ease with which poly(diketoenamine)s can be manufactured, used, recycled and re-used—without losing value—points to new directions in designing sustainable polymers with minimal environmental impact."

This almost sounds too good to be true. 100% recyclable? Go for it guys.
SOURCE URL: https://www.foxnews.com/science/holy-grail-recyclable-plastics


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