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Pyrolysis of rejects

Pyrolysis of rejects

Both end consumers and industry worldwide generate ever increasing amounts of waste that contains plastic, which is still mostly dumped or burned instead of being recycled. ANDRITZ has combined its fiber and reject treatment know-how from pulp and paper applications with innovative pyrolysis technology, with the aim of closing the recycling loops.

Green cooperation

The market for plastic and plastic-containing products has grown tremendously in the past decades and so have the amounts of plastic waste. A number of recycled paper mills that use liquid packaging board (LPB) or used beverage cartons (UBC) as raw material produce substantial volumes of rejects containing plastic and aluminum. This has led ANDRITZ – being a full-line supplier of reject treatment systems – to sign a cooperation agreement with Alucha, one of the leading developers worldwide of innovative pyrolysis processes for industrial applications. The aim is to supply new technologies and equipment for pyrolysis of rejects generated in the processing of LBP or UBC, as well as other rejects containing plastic that occur in pulp and paper applications. ANDRITZ acts as a supplier as well as a sales and license partner under this cooperation agreement.

The combined technologies will help paper mills

  • optimize fiber recovery from LPB and UBC;
  • separate and recover valuable aluminum;
  • reduce the total operating costs by substituting pyrolysis products (gas, oil) for primary energy sources.

Recycling of rejects

Full recycling of plastic rejects and laminates

The basic technical principle of pyrolysis is a chemical process – a technology for high-temperature heating of organic material in the absence of oxygen. When the aluminum and polyethylene plastic compounds of UBC (which account for approx. 25% of a beverage carton) are subjected to pyrolysis, this is what happens: the plastic turns into a hot gas that is later cooled down forming pyrolysis gas and oil; the aluminum, however, can withstand the high temperatures, remaining in metal form, and can later be re-sold to the metal industry.

Environmental benefits

  • Zero waste: Instead of landfilling or incineration of the residual waste stream, it is converted into sellable products.
  • Closed-loop recycling concept: Organics to fuels; metals/minerals to metals/minerals.
  • Saving in global CO2 emissions.

Operational benefits

  • Industrially proven.
  • Continuous process and highly automated system.
  • Flexible system that can be integrated easily into local needs. Fuels can be used for various purposes and stored for later use.

Economic benefits

  • Profitable system with short payback period.
  • Reduced waste disposal costs.
  • Inorganics can be sold for re-use; fuels can be used to produce steam or electricity.
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