(438d) Oil Sorbent from Plastic Wastes

Saleem, J., HKUST
Bazargan, A., HKUST
Barford, J., Hong Kong University of Science and Technology
McKay, G., Hong Kong University of Science and Technology

Thermoplastics (such as polypropylene, polyethylene, polyethylene terephthalate (PET), high density polyethylene (HDPE) etc.) are key components of municipal solid waste. Huge quantity of plastic waste is thrown out each year, which is mostly either discarded in landfills or incinerated. In this work, we provide an innovative way to produce value-added product such as oil-sorbent from waste plastic HDPE. The presented sorbent exhibits high uptake capacity (50g/g) measured after 2 minutes of dripping. The mechanical properties were also examined to ensure that it is not vulnerable to breakage, hence making it practical for most oil spill sites. Tensile modulus and breaking stress values are higher than 600 MPa and 80 MPa respectively. The sorption process was explained by pseudo second order kinetic model. The results demonstrate that our sorbent sheets are viable candidates for widespread production and utilization especially considering value-addition and cost effectiveness using plastic wastes.


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