Rubber Recycling

How to Reclaim Rubber for Reuse

Recycling of rubber is carried out by:

  • Reusing the original product,
  • Reusing the product materials (for example, cutting, stamping and punching shapes from the material),
  • Downcycling the material to act as a filler for new products orreducing the material into its primary constituents through pyrolysis.
  • Devulcanisation, i.e. reversed vulcanization reaction of the material for use in similar products.

Looking back on conventional recycling processes

Rubber recycling : a solution to devulcanize production residues and scraps"Reusing the original product was long regarded as the most environmentally effective method of recycling as it often has the lowest impact on material resources, energy consumption and emissions from manufacturing.
Reusing the product materials was regarded as the second best option from an environmental viewpoint. Technologies such as retreading enable most of the original product to be reused whilst the manufacture of barriers from compressed and baled tyres and shoe soles from stamped tyre tread are examples of alternative applications for these materials.
Most current commercial processes rely on a chemical "reactivation" of the surface of the vulcanised material. This process often requires the scrap material to be finely crumbed to increase the surface area before treatment." 

The ideal form of recycling requires the reversal of the vulcanisation process to provide a devulcanised material for re-use

As a generally accepted and economically viable solution to this problem has traditionally not been available, this area has long remained the focus of a number of research activities. However, this did not take into account Watson Brown's innovation :

Results obtained from the HSM process indicate that a reversal of the crosslinked network takes place to provide materials that are reformable and recurable.

Learn more about recycling using REP devulcanization technology


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