The plastics industry is constantly evolving. Companies and manufacturers are continually looking for new ways to meet consumer demands and new regulations and find new and exciting ways to use and reuse plastic.transparent polymer resin.
While the idea of recycling and renewable materials is not new, consumers and lobbying groups have increased the demand for reusable materials in recent years. This, among other factors, has led to innovations in the plastics world in recent years.
This year is no exception. That’s why we’re taking a look at some of the most interesting and exciting inventions in the plastic world.
Stronger than steel
Chemical engineers at MIT have recently created a new plastic-like material that’s said to be stronger than steel and bulletproof glass while maintaining the weight and flexibility of plastic.
The material, dubbed 2DPA-1, is the first flat, two-dimensional polymer. It self-assembles into sheets and forms a one-dimensional chain. Its building blocks are firmly locked together, much like how Lego pieces stick together. Before this, researchers believed it was impossible to induce polymers to form 2D sheets.
Researchers are already looking at the material as an option for car parts, cell phones and building materials.
Klöckner Pentaplast has developed the first pharmaceutical blister film designed to be recycled in the RIC 1 recycling stream. Medicine blister films are typically not readily recyclable. But the company has created a new formation that allows this packaging to be recycled alongside other plastic items, like water bottles and milk jugs.
The African country of Nairobi generates an astonishing 480 tons of plastic waste every day. But one young woman is tackling this issue.
She has developed a process to turn plastic waste into bricks that can be used for paving stones, streets, and even houses. The bricks are stronger than concrete material. Her start-up company, Gjenge Makers’, currently produces between 500-1000 bricks per day, which equates to recycling around 500 kilograms of plastic waste a day, according to the company.
The bricks have so far been used to pave streets and paths and in building materials for houses and schools. The bricks are also much more affordable for low-income communities in the country.
The use of AI is not new, but some companies have begun using the science in creative ways. One company doing this is Diwana. The company provides waste-sorting facilities with needed software and hardware. But now the company has begun using AI-based image recognition software in waste sorting. The software more efficiently sorts recyclable material from non-recyclable material, meaning less waste and a lower recycling cost for companies.
This one may not be revolutionary in our lives, but it’s still a fun mention. YouTube host, Matty Benedetto, is known for his Lego-themed inventions. Last year, he created Lego socks to prevent pain when stepping on those plastic bricks. But now he’s gaining new attention for his Lego vacuum.
The vacuum sucks up the little plastic bricks from the floor and sorts them by shape. It was created by modifying a traditional Shop-Vac with 3D-printed four canister inserts that filter Lego pieces by size as they’re sucked up!
There’s no denying that the future of plastic is constantly evolving. We’re looking forward to what’s next for this versatile and essential material.
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