Recovery of useable plastics from post-consumer and manufacturing waste remains a major recycling challenge. The global consumption of plastics was reported to be 230 million tonnes in 2005 of which 47.5 million tonnes were produced in Europe (25 European Union countries + Norway and Switzerland). Of the European production, only 22 million tonnes were reported as having been collected. Of this collected waste, 4 million tonnes were recycled as a manufacturing feedstock (18%) and 6.4 million tonnes went into energy recovery (29%), with the balance (11.6 million tonnes) probably being disposed in landfills. The recycling of plastics is a process essential to reduce the efflux of materials to landfills and to decrease the production of raw materials. In recent years awareness of the importance of environmental protection has led to the development of different techniques for plastic recycling. One issue related to the recycling of this material is the presence in the market of many types of plastics (polymers with additives), often with similar characteristics that make them difficult to differentiate in the recovery phase. The separator “Multidune” is a hydraulic separator by density. Its name derives from the characteristic undulate profile of the channel where separation occurs. The channel is constructed from a sequence of closed parallel cylindrical tubes welded together in plane which are then sliced down the lateral mid-plane and the lower complex is laterally shifted relative to the upper complex. The Multidune allows solid particle separation according to their specific weight and the velocity field establishing within the apparatus. Previous investigations suggested the flow within the Multidune is organized into three main patterns. Principally, a longitudinal transport flow takes place, where the velocity is high. A particle belonging to this region can move from one camera to another. The second region is the lower recirculation zone with high values of the vorticity field. Particles belonging to this region undergo the vertical impulse of the fluid. The thrust is proportional to the vertical velocity component and, in conjunction with gravity and buoyancy, determines the destiny of a particle. If the thrust is larger than the net weight of the particle, an interaction with the principal transport flow occurs and, consequently, the particle will move to the following chamber. The third region is the upper recirculation zone whose dimensions are smaller than the other recirculation zone. If a particle moves from the principal flow to the secondary vorticity zone, it will have the chance to come back to the previous chamber, assuming the principal transport flow thrust does not prevent it from falling out. Because of the role played by velocity, the fluid dynamic investigation of the Multidune apparatus is a preliminary step to carry out in order to investigate its capability in separating solid particles. For this reason a novel experimental campaign was set up and image analysis was employed to detect the velocity field within the apparatus.
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|Titolo:||Fluid-dynamic characterization and efficiency analysis in plastic separation of the hydraulic separator Multidune|
|Data di pubblicazione:||2012|
|Appartiene alla tipologia:||02a Capitolo o Articolo|