Bottles Up

Transforming Recycled Plastic Bottles Into 3D Printer Filament

December 2015, Group 17
Team Members

Scope

The scope of this project is to design and build a small scale device that shreds clean plastic bottle, heats the shreds and extrudes them through a nozzle as professional grade 3D printer filament. The filament must be usable in commercially available 3D printers with no further modification. The motivation of this project is to prove the concepts involved in transforming bottles to filament  on a small scale that could be applied in the future at an idustrial scale in recycling plants. Plastic bottles are usually made from PET and after they are tested, other less valuable plastics (such as LDPE). will also be tested. If low density plastics (which are difficult to recycle and seen as a  low value product) can be transformed into 3D printer filament, a new value stream will be added to the plastic recycling industry.

Sponsor

The group sponsor for this project is Scotia Recycling Inc. Scotia recycling currently sells recycled plastic to manufacturing companies. Manufacturing companies are typically only interested in purchasing high grade recycled plastic, so to recycle low grade plasti, Scotia Recycling Inc. forces manufacturing companies to take a portion of low grade plastics with thei high grade. Scotia Recycling Inc. is most interested in the possibility of  adding value to low grade plastic by transforming it into sellable 3D printing filament.