Making products more circular with one key substance

What do recycled bottles, electronic devices and paper have in common? At first sight nothing. When you dig a little deeper, you will find out that the chemical industry can make all these products re-usable with one and the same substance: sodium hydroxide.

In paper recycling, sodium hydroxide is used to remove the ink from paper, allowing the fibres to be re-used. The same chemical is used to purify recycled bottles to make sure they are safe to be re-used as drink containers. Microchips and circuit boards in electronic devices have coatings which need to be removed in order to be re-used. You guessed it, sodium hydroxide can fulfill this task.

By making these products circular, the chemical industry is contributing to making them more sustainable.

Read more here.

Related case studies

Advanced chemical additives boost the quality of recycled paper

A new generation of biodegradable additives helps tackle paper waste

Even though digitalisation is increasing, the use of paper is still an important part of…

Recycling coffee cups into building insulation

Giving coffee cups a new life

You come across them in many office buildings: vending machines with coffee cups made of…

Solvents – a key ingredient of durable and sustainable materials

Solvents help make energy efficient products

Solvents dissolve other substances. Water is a solvent, which is easily available and simple and…

Recycling the unrecyclable

A new technology makes it possible to recycle complex multi-layer materials

The transition to a circular economy seeks to replace today’s linear “take-make-dispose” approach to resources….

Recycling food packaging into school desks

A new project improves child nutrition in South Africa and shows circular economy in action

Food packaging plays an important role in preventing food waste, keeping our food fresh longer…

Recycling more plastics

A magnetic fluid technology helps recycle coloured PET packaging

Most of the packaging for food and beverages we use every day is made from…