Having knowledge of the different types of plastic is critical to understanding the complexity of recycling, upcycling and the health factors associated with plastic.
Plastic is defined as a material that contains an essential ingredient an organic substance of large molecular weight. It is also defined as polymers of long carbon chains. Their plasticity makes it possible for plastics to be moulded, extruded, or pressed into solid objects of various shapes.
Plastic was discovered by famous German chemist Christian Schonbein in 1846. Plastics were actually discovered accidentally. Christian was experimenting in his kitchen and by accident, he spilt a mixture of nitric acid and sulphuric acid. To mop that solution (a mixture of nitric and sulphuric acid) he took a cloth and after moping he kept it over the stove. After some time, the cloth disappeared and from their plastic got its name.
Recycling of plastic is very important. If they are not recycled at the proper time, then they get mixed with other chemicals or materials and hence become more difficult to recycle and become a source of pollution.
Recycling & Reduce of waste plastic leave many benefits, it reduces the use of virgin plastic and also the use of energy & thus reduces carbon dioxide emissions & it also prevents the waste from going to landfills.
They are non-biodegradable, and they do not get decomposed by the microbial action.
Polyethylene Terephthalate (PETE), commonly referred to as PET, is a versatile plastic resin widely used for items such as bottles, food containers, plastic bags, and packaging materials. It also serves as the basis for polyester fibers in textiles and finds applications in construction materials, showcasing its versatility across different industries.
High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE) is a versatile plastic resin used for various items, including bottles, pipes, containers, toys, and packaging materials. Its durability and resistance to chemicals make it suitable for applications ranging from water bottles to industrial pipelines.
Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC) is a widely used plastic commonly found in items such as pipes, electrical cables, vinyl siding, window frames, and a wide range of consumer and industrial products. Its adaptability, durability, and cost-effectiveness have made PVC a popular choice in construction, manufacturing, and everyday items.
Low-Density Polyethylene (LDPE) is a versatile plastic known for its flexibility and durability. LDPE is commonly used in the production of plastic films and sheets, such as plastic bags, food packaging, and agricultural films. It is also used in various containers, including squeezable bottles, and as a coating for paper and cardboard to provide water resistance.
Polypropylene (PP) is a versatile thermoplastic polymer known for its strength and heat resistance. PP is commonly used in a variety of items, including packaging materials, such as plastic containers, bottles, and caps. It’s also found in textiles, automotive components, medical devices, and a wide range of consumer and industrial products.
Polystyrene (PS) is a lightweight and rigid plastic often used in various products and packaging materials. Common items made from polystyrene include disposable foam cups, food containers, packaging peanuts, and protective packaging for electronics. It’s also used to create various consumer goods, including toys, CD cases, and even insulation materials.
Miscellaneous Plastics” include a diverse range of plastic materials used in various applications, such as Polycarbonate (PC), Polyurethane (PU), Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene (ABS), and more, each with specific uses in industries like electronics, automotive, and packaging.