Recyling plastics waste to new plastics and fuels


Using a pyrolysis process, plastic can be cracked down to fractions of shorter carbon chains. The highest plastic quality is obtained from the naphtha fraction (C5-C12), which should thus be maximized. It is thought that the formation of the naphtha fraction can be facilitated by use of a catalyst and hydrogen. The scope of this project is to determine an optimal catalytic reactor configuration for the production of naphtha using both pure plastics and bio-plastic mixtures.


Plastic solid waste (PSW) is a major source of environmental pollution. In an effort to utilize the waste, it is of high interest to recycle the plastics. However, during mechanical recycling, the plastic quality decays for each cycle. This only allows for a few recycles and better alternatives are sought after. One option is chemical recycling, where the specific carbon chain lenghts that plastics are produced from are targeted.

The project

The project is an experimental investigation of hydropyrolysis of plastics into shorter carbon chain fractions in a catalytic reactor configuration. The setup consists of both a fluidized bed and a fixed bed, giving four possible configurations, depending on whether or not a catalyst is applied in each bed. The role of catalyst choice and deactivation will be investigated and reaction conditions will be optimized to maximize the formation of the naphtha (C5-C12) fraction.


For more information, contact:
Troels Kaas Ibsen, PhD Student, DTU
Anker Degn Jensen, Professor, DTU
Martin Høj, Assistant Professor, DTU


Anker Degn Jensen
DTU Kemiteknik
45 25 28 41


Troels Kaas Ibsen
DTU Kemiteknik
20 35 15 81


Martin Høj
DTU Kemiteknik
45 25 28 42