Friday May 24, 2024

Plastic waste recycling defended as environment-friendly exercise

By Bureau report
September 19, 2023

PESHAWAR: Muhammad Ziad on Monday successfully defended his Ph.D thesis at Department of Environmental Sciences, University of Peshawar.

His topic of research was “Recycling of Municipal Plastic Waste for Energy Recovery in Peshawar”, which he completed under the supervision of Prof Dr Sardar Khan, Vice Chancellor Kohat University of Sciences and Technology.

His research addresses the pressing need to shift away from petroleum-based energy sources due to high prices, limited supply, and petroleum depletion concerns.It highlights the potential of plastic waste as a promising alternative for creating fuel-like products and managing plastic waste more sustainably.

Dr Ziad’s research aims to quantify plastic waste generation and to characterise and convert various types of plastic waste into liquid oil and gas through thermal and catalytic pyrolysis processes.

The study conducted pyrolysis of plastic waste, with temperature and retention time affecting the quality and quantity of liquid oil produced. Higher temperatures improved yield quality and quantity, while longer retention times had similar effects.

Comparatively, thermal pyrolysis generated more liquid oil than catalytic pyrolysis, although catalytic oil quality was superior.Comprehensive analysis of the liquid oil included viscosity, pour point, density, flash point, calorific value, and spectroscopic analysis, confirming its suitability as an alternative to traditional fuels like kerosene, diesel, and petrol.

The study suggests that thermal and catalytic pyrolysis of plastic waste is an environmental-friendly and economically viable technique for producing valuable liquid oil, which can serve as an alternative to conventional fuels and find applications in transport, refineries, and the chemical industry. Government should implement such technologies at large scale in order to overcome the plastic waste menace in a sustainable, environmental and economical way.