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New Chemical Process Can Convert Nearly a Quarter of All Plastic Waste Into Fuel - Slashdot

"Researchers at Purdue University have developed a new chemical process that they say can convert approximately one-quarter of the world's plastic waste into gasoline and diesel-like fuels," writes Slashdot reader dmoberhaus. Motherboard explains how it works: As detailed in a paper published this week in Sustainable Chemistry and Engineering, the chemists discovered a way to convert polypropylene -- a type of plastic commonly used in toys, medical devices, and product packaging like potato chip bags -- into gasoline and diesel-like fuel. The researchers said that this fuel is pure enough to be used as blendstock, a main component of fuel used in motorized vehicles. Polypropylene waste accounts for just under a quarter of the estimated 5 billion tons of plastic that have amassed in the world's landfills in the last 50 years.

To turn polypropylene into fuel, the researchers used supercritical water, a phase of water that demonstrates characteristics of both a liquid and a...(continued)

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