Belgian company discovers a new method of recycling nearly 100% of used cars

Belgian company discovers a new method of recycling nearly 100% of used cars
A junk yard with disused cars. Credit: Gary Scott/Pixabay

A Belgian recycling company has come up with a new way to transform used car parts, such as foams, textiles, plastics, rubber, and polymers, into synthetic fuel.

Synthetic fuel is liquid or sometimes gaseous fuel, obtained from syngas, a mixture of carbon monoxide and hydrogen.

“Seat foam, textiles, plastics, rubber, wood, and polymers: around 6% of car components can’t be recycled. With our Phoenix project, we turn them into what we call fluff,” explains Pierre-François Bareel, CEO of Comet, the Belgian recycling company who came up with the discovery.

“We use a process called ‘catalytic cracking’ at low temperature. It means the fluff is heated in a kind of reactor without oxygen. Under the effect of a catalyst, the decomposed organic matter then recombines into a liquid,” continues the CEO.

It is normal for car parts made from glass and metal to be recycled. However, with this new method of catalytic cracking, the company claims that 97.8% of car parts can be recycled when a vehicle is no longer in use, reported New Mobility.

Comet hopes to invest in a plant capable of processing 35,000 tonnes of fluff per year. The CEO estimated that the amount of fluff in Europe totals around 10 million tonnes.

Evie McCullough
The Brussels Times 


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