The Future of Waste
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The Future of Waste
Articles mapping out the future of waste. Blogs at www.garbologie.com
Curated by Adam Johnson
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One man’s rubbish: Aircraft recycling

One man’s rubbish: Aircraft recycling | The Future of Waste | Scoop.it

A great story on the business of end-of-life aircraft.

 

The economics are really challenging. Recyclers typically purchase end-of-life aircraft for up to $20m (though typically much less), and then dismantle them to recover parts for resale. That works when fleets are stable, however when there is a large shift in fleets (such as where inefficient aircraft are replaced), then the parts are worth much less. Then the aircraft are recycled for scrap metal.

 

An organisation leading the way here is the Aircraft Fleet Recycling Association. It accredits organisations in dismantling and recycling aircraft, and has a good handle on the industry.

 

At its heart, to make money in dismantling aircraft, you have to know the aviation industry. Very well.

 

Relevant site:

Aircraft Fleet Recycling Association: http://www.afraassociation.org/

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Recycling high-tech plastic and carbon fibre

Recycling high-tech plastic and carbon fibre | The Future of Waste | Scoop.it

Composites (high-tech plastics and carbon fibre) are used extensively in aircraft manufacture.

 

Boeing is working with Materials Innovation Technology and ELG Carbon Fibre to recycle raw composites into recycled composites. This is achieved by shredding and then pyrolysis, thus removing the resin from the composites and leaving a lower grade fibre.

 

Whilst the recycled composites can't be used for structural parts, they can be used in non-structural elements. Doing this is expected to yield environmental benefits and cost savings. The same amount of recycled fibre requires 5% of the energy as producing virgin fibre.

 

Relevant websites are:

Materials Innovation Technology: http://www.emergingmit.com/

ELG Carbon Fibre: http://www.elgcf.com/

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