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The recycling of waste plastics is of considerable significance with environmental and economic benefits, while available separation approaches have been considered as a major bottleneck for its widespread application. Thus, we proposed a simple method, flotation along with surface modification, to separate waste acrylonitrile-butadienestyrene and polyvinylchloride mixtures. Single-factor experiment was conducted to determine the critical parameters in surface modification. Surface response methodology using Box-Behnken Design was performed to optimize separation performance. The quadratic models were generated to predict the floatability of acrylonitrile-butadienestyrene and the difference between the floatability of polyvinylchloride and acrylonitrile-butadienestyrene. The model was also utilized to determine optimized conditions by desirability approaches. The optimized conditions were: concentration = 0.18 M, temperature = 75.00 °C, treatment time = 11.50 min along with stirring rate = 200 rpm. The efficient separation of acrylonitrile-butadienestyrene and polyvinylchloride was achieved, yielding recovery of 98.40% and purity of 98.43%. The experimental responses well agreed with predicted values, demonstrating the accuracy of the prediction model. The formed hydrophilic groups, coated iron oxide, and signs of corrosion were confirmed as the major mechanism for the selective surface hydrophilization of acrylonitrile-butadienestyrene. Consequently, this method is feasible for separation of waste acrylonitrile-butadienestyrene and polyvinylchloride mixtures, and can be expected to promote the sustainable recycling of waste plastics.
This article was published in the following journal.
Name: Waste management (New York, N.Y.)
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