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Horikx Case Study: Information about the relative amounts of random chain and cross-link scission is crucial to understand which phenomenon prevails. The applicability of the Horikx theory depends upon how accurately we can determinate the sol fraction of rubber. The sol being determined by extraction (Soxhlet method). The findings show that the Horikx method can be used to effectively quantify devulcanisation and describe network breakdown. Such information is essential in the optimization of a recycling process so that polymer chain scission is minimized, allowing the physical properties (and value) of the product to be maximized. ARTIS have the capability to determine the necessary experimental parameters to allow generation of curves for demonstrating the relative amounts of main chain scissions and cross-link scission occurring during a process.
GTR in Thermoplastics Case Study: The use of small quantities of ground tyre rubber (GTR) incorporated back into a rubber compound to reduce cost is well known in the industry and the effects on mechanical properties are also well documented. However the use of GTR as a modifier of thermoplastic polymers to produce a composite thermoplastic elastomer is less well understood. Several studies have looked at waste streams of polyethylene and polypropylene as a matrix system but these polymers are not particularly compatible with tyre rubber so the final composite properties have been poor and the uptake of these materials in commercial applications have been limited to low technology applications such as foot pedals and floor mats. A recent study by ARTIS looked at alternative matrix polymers which offer the prospect of improved mechanical properties and open up the possibility of recycled car tyre rubber penetrating higher technology markets.
SMG members can access these new studies via the knowledge centre