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Comparing life cycle energy and global warming potential of carbon fibre composite recycling technologies and waste management options

Meng, Fanran; Olivetti, Elsa A.; Zhao, Youyang; Chang, Jiyoun C.; Pickering, Stephen J.; McKechnie, Jon

Authors

Elsa A. Olivetti

Youyang Zhao

Jiyoun C. Chang



Abstract

Carbon fibre reinforced polymers (CFRP) are used in increasing quantities as they have some of the best properties in terms of specific strength and stiffness of any widely available material. By 2020, annual global CFRP production is expected to be over 140,000 tonnes. However, the resulting increased quantity of CFRP waste has highlighted the need for sustainable treatment options as carbon fibre manufacture has high-energy intensity. A life cycle methodology is used to evaluate primary energy demand (PED) and global warming potential (GWP) leveraging best available literature data, process models, and experimental work. Overall results indicate that recycling scenarios are generally the environmentally preferable options over landfill and incineration. However, the relative environmental benefits of advanced recycling processes (i.e., pyrolysis, fluidised bed, and chemical recycling process) depend on the method used to determine displacement of virgin carbon fibre by recycled carbon fibre. Totally, recycling processes can achieve a representative GWP of -19 to -27 kg CO2eq. and PED of -395 to -520 MJ per kg CFRP, providing superior environmental performance to conventional composite waste treatment technologies.

Citation

Meng, F., Olivetti, E. A., Zhao, Y., Chang, J. C., Pickering, S. J., & McKechnie, J. (in press). Comparing life cycle energy and global warming potential of carbon fibre composite recycling technologies and waste management options. ACS Sustainable Chemistry and Engineering, https://doi.org/10.1021/acssuschemeng.8b01026

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Jun 20, 2018
Online Publication Date Jun 20, 2018
Deposit Date Jul 2, 2018
Publicly Available Date Jun 21, 2019
Journal ACS Sustainable Chemistry & Engineering
Electronic ISSN 2168-0485
Publisher American Chemical Society
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
DOI https://doi.org/10.1021/acssuschemeng.8b01026
Public URL http://eprints.nottingham.ac.uk/id/eprint/52706
Publisher URL https://pubs.acs.org/doi/10.1021/acssuschemeng.8b01026
Copyright Statement Copyright information regarding this work can be found at the following address: http://eprints.nottingh.../end_user_agreement.pdf

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Copyright Statement
Copyright information regarding this work can be found at the following address: http://eprints.nottingham.ac.uk/end_user_agreement.pdf





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