Taming plastic: environmental responsibility

by Jun 5, 2023blog

When it comes to environmental protection the plastic waste always has been an issue. But plastic still is very useful in our everyday life and it’s hard for many companies in the economic industry to find a way to provide another material that is as cheap and as useful as plastic. So, the big plastic and million dollar companies are trying to make a new material that will fulfill our needs and the companies’ needs and interests.  The plastic companies are already evolving and the future of plastic is looking bright!

Here are some of the newest inventions in the plastic industry that assures us of a bright future in the plastic producing industry:

Stronger than steel

Chemical engineers at MIT have recently created a new, impressive plastic-like material that they claim that is stronger than steel and bulletproof glass while maintaining the same weight and flexibility as other plastics.  

The material, dubbed 2DPA-1, is the first flat, two-dimensional polymer. It can form a one-dimensional chain by self-assembling into sheets. Much like how Lego pieces stick together, its building blocks are firmly locked together. Researchers believed that inducing polymers to form 2D sheets is impossible, but this invention proved them wrong.

Researchers are already looking into this as an option for making car parts, cell phones and building material. 

Better packaging

The first pharmaceutical blister film that can be recycled in the RIC1 recycling stream was developed by the plastic fabrication company Klöckner Pentaplast.  Regular medicine blister films are not readily recyclable. That is why this amazing invention can change the pharmaceutical industry forever. It can reduce blister film pollution all around the world.  

Building material

The African country of Nairobi generates an astonishing 480 tons of plastic waste every day. But one young woman is tackling this issue.     

Nzambi Matee found a way to turn plastic waste into bricks that can be used for paving stones, streets, and even houses.  These bricks are even stronger than concrete material. She is the founder of the company Gjenge Makers that currently produces 500-1000 bricks per day. According to the company they recycle around 500 kilograms of plastic per day!     

These bricks so far have been used to pave streets and in building material for houses and schools. This invention is also very useful for low-income communities in the country, because these bricks are way more affordable than other building materials.

Artificial intelligence  

Many companies are starting to use AI in new ways. The company Diwana started using AI-based image recognition software in waste sorting. The software sorts recyclable materials from non-recyclable materials more efficiently, which means less waste and a lower recycling cost for companies.

Lego vacuum

Famous YouTube host, Matty Bendetto known for his amazing Lego inventions, is gaining new attention for his new invention, the Lego vacuum. This fun invention sucks up lego pieces and sorts them by shape.  It was created by modifying a traditional Shop-Vac with 3D-printed four canister inserts that filter Lego pieces by size as they’re sucked up!

In conclusion we certainly can say that the plastic industry is evolving and that it is making sure we have a bright future with plastic.

Written by students from “Petar Pop Arsov” Skopje