About Chemistry, Environment, Waste Management and Green Life Inspirations

12 August 2009

Lubricant Oil from Waste Plastic

Do you know if a later time used plastic bottles can be used as a raw material for making lubricant for motor vehicles? If not, check it at the Stephen J. Miller, Ph.D., a scientist and senior research consultant at Chevron. Together with colleagues in the Center research Chevron Energy Technology Company, Richmond, California, United States and the University of Kentucky, he succeeded in changing waste plastic into oil lubricants. How?

Most of the population in the world using the plastic in the running activities. According to Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) United States, in 2001, the United States use at least 25 million tons of plastic each year. Not yet added user plastic in other countries. Not a surprise if a lot of plastic used. Plastics have many advantages compared to other materials. In general, the plastic has a low density, is isolation of the electrical, mechanical strength is varied, limited temperature resistance, and durability of chemicals that vary. In addition, the plastic is also lightweight, easily in the design, and cost of making cheaper.

Unfortunately, behind all the benefits, waste plastic cause problems for the environment. The nature of plastic is not another that can not be described in the land. To overcome this problem, environmental experts and scientists from various disciplines have conducted various research and action. One way to recycle plastic waste. However, this is not too effective. Only about 4%, which can be recycled, the rest in the shelter menggunung waste. Can piles of plastic waste can be converted into lubricant? Problems that underlie Miller and colleagues conducted this research.

Most people use a plastic type of plastic is polietilena. There are two types of polietilena, namely high density polyethylene (HDPE) and low density polyethylene (LDPE). HDPE is used more as plastic beverage bottles, while for LDPE plastic bags. In research to be published in the Journal of the American Chemical Society Fuel and Energy (Energy and Fuel) edition of July 20, 2005, Miller polietilena heating method using pirolisis, and investigate the results of heating the substance. In fact, when heated will polietilena a compound liquid hydrocarbons. Compound has a similar form of wax (wax).

A large plastic straggling is about 60%, a number of the quite a lot. Chemical structure of the compound liquid hydrocarbons similar wax allow this to be processed into high-quality lubricant. Just enough information, the lubricant that is currently circulating in the market derived from processing petroleum. Crude oil (crude oil) of oil drilling in the bottom of the earth compound contains various hydrocarbons with boiling point is different. Then, various compound hydrocarbons in the crude oil is separated using a multistage distillation techniques (distillation) based on the difference didihnya point.

Besides fuel, like gasoline, diesel, and kerosene, crude oil distillation also produces oil lubricants. Nature of chemical compound from the liquid hydrocarbons heating waste plastic compound similar to hydrocarbons in the crude oil so that it can be processed into oil lubricants. Changing the liquid hydrocarbons pirolisis plastic waste into oil using a method hidroisomerisasi lubricants. Miller hopes this artificial lubricant can be used for vehicles with the same quality with the distillation of petroleum crude oil, environmentally friendly, and economical. In fact, the oil business of making synthetic liquid hydrocarbons from the compound, this is not a new thing.

In the early 1990s, the company Chevron has been trying to change the compound liquid hydrocarbons into synthetic fuel for commercial purposes. The only raw material used to produce a compound liquid hydrocarbons derived from natural gas (generally gas metana) katalitik through a process known as the Fischer-Tropsch process. In the Fischer-Tropsch process, the gas metana converted into synthesis gas (syngas), which is a mixture of hydrogen gas and carbon monoxide, with the help of iron or cobalt as catalyst. Furthermore, the syngas is converted into liquid hydrocarbons compound, and then processed using hydrocracking process into fuel and other petroleum products, including the lubricant. Compound liquid hydrocarbons from syngas conversion results have the same chemical nature of the polietilena. Natural gas used came from the United States. Later, the sea area offshore the Middle East are a source of natural gas because the price of natural gas there is cheaper. Lubricant oil from natural gas for a while this can be an alternative lubricant to petroleum processing results. In the future, natural gas reserves in the world will soon diminish. On the other hand, the need for the higher lubricant.

Now, with the discovery of this, the making of lubricant does not appear to need more natural gas. Simply use the waste plastic bottles, the oil lubricant. Interested in trying?

Source: http://acswebapplications.acs.org Ket: Both writers are alumni of Department of Chemistry FMIPA Padjadjaran University and Community pegiat in Alchemist.

1 comment:

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