Sharp Begins to Recycle Plastic Used in Flat-screen TVs

2013/11/08 17:37
Masaru Yoshida, Nikkei Monozukuri
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Sharp Corp and Kansai Recycling Systems Co Ltd (KRSC) co-developed a recycling technology that restores the properties of plastic reclaimed from used flat-screen TVs to their original state.

The case of a flat-screen TV contains a plastic made by mixing polycarbonate (PC) and acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS). The new technology restores the properties of the plastic such as impact and flame resistances by adding a special additive after reclaiming and crushing the plastic.

The technology has been used at KRSC's Second Plant since May 2013. And the reclaimed plastic was employed for parts of an automotive "plasma cluster ion generator" that Sharp will release Nov 8, 2013.

Sharp has already started using technologies of recycling polypropylene and polystyrene, which are used in large amounts in washing machines, refrigerators and air conditioners (three of the four major home appliances (washing machine, refrigerator, air conditioner and TV)), as parts of products.

The case of a flat-screen TV contains a large amount of the mixture of PC and ABS, which has a high rigidity and high impact and flame resistances. However, its properties deteriorate due to long-term use, making it difficult to recycle the mixture as parts of products with conventional recycling technologies.