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Detergent impurity effect on recycled HDPE: Properties after repetitive processing

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review


Original languageEnglish
Article number43766
JournalJournal of Applied Polymer Science
Issue number31
Publication statusPublished - 15 Aug 2016
Publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


High density polyethylene (rHDPE) is extruded 1 to 8 times, with and without detergent, to simulate the effects of impurities on the material and on the artificial ageing process. The mechanical properties, thermal stability, rheology, Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR), and volatile organic compound (VOC) emissions are measured. According to the results, ageing of rHDPE increases tensile strength, reduces elongation, and enhances side chain branching of the material and thus causes rheological changes. The addition of detergent reduces changes in mechanical properties and rheological behavior but accelerates thermal degradation. VOC and FTIR measurements of the samples with detergent addition show generation of harmful 1,4-dioxane. The amount of total emission, as well as emissions of important perfumes limonene and 1R-α-pinene, decreases during multiple extrusion cycles. Heating of the plastics is found to be a major factor in the VOC emission reduction. Impurities have a notable effect on the artificial ageing results.


  • Ageing, Degradation, Polyolefins, Recycling

Publication forum classification

Field of science, Statistics Finland