Rubber Recycling – The World Needs A Real Solution

crumbrubber A few days ago I saw an interesting article about a big rubber scrap (tire) rubber recycling operation being set up in Houston. Actually what was interesting was the way in which they justified the process and it’s viability, they were trying to compare the production of crumb as a superior recycling solution to the retreading of tires. The point I am making is that when you have been floating in a void long enough you forget where you come from and where your going becomes a function of the direction you happen to be pointed in. Now it sounds like a desperate attempt to find a positive spin to defend the indefensible where the audience has forgotten the plot, so no worries.

The commercial justification for retreading was not evolved overnight nor were the compound costings for value added and low end formulations. Every material has its role and place in the sun, with a rationale that has been tried and tested. These are incredibly ignorant approaches to take and I fear the void left by the lack of a viable cost effective and value added devulcanization process technology has allowed not only the lowest common denominators to become the norm but intermediate materials are being touted as the best option for the lowest applications imaginable.

Playground flooring 01The regurgitated rubber recycling technologies being touted range form  asphalt, Athletic and Playground flooring, TDF, Pyrolysis and off course the flavour of the month Reclaim Rubber. All of them have their own premise and limitations, none of them even remotely addressing the real problem being faced in any meaningful way.

Finally TDF 02their version of appropriate application of recycling is to burn tires in a furnace as a substitute for Coal. The fact that they are going to be getting literally no more than the value of coal from this amazing material is considered admirable and the fact that it is going to be a source of pollution seems to be conveniently forgotten. The total and unreserved contempt I have for this approach is palpable and requires no explanation.

Again in the same vein but this time with at least some new technology for the first time there is another attempt in the form of Microwave devulcanization which has several big companies excited, again for want of a cost effective alternative.

The fact is that we (SRI) have a solution now, the word is only just getting out, in due course it will be in terms of tangible results and performance. We have the first truly high volume recycling process for scrap tires that recovers a substantial proportion of the properties while doing it in a low energy consuming system and generating absolutely no discharge of any kind. That’s right a system that actually does it all, the SRI activation system which will be introduced in Asia, Europe and North America will rewrite the protocols for tire scrap management both from in terms of approach and expectations. We have tested them successfully in the most challenging applications and have moved forward at a pace that has been nothing short of spectacular. Being able to reduce a manufacturers raw material cost by 6 to 8% after he has already done his best by way of fillers and diluents is saying something.

The time has come the world needs a real solution for scrap tires that doesn’t involve going from one form of pollution to another more politically correct form or dusting off out century and decade old processing technologies representing them in a cosmetically altered state just to do something. Well we are going to do something about it, Sekhar Research Innovations (SRI) is going to provide a total comprehensive solution to this Global problem and make rubber recycling in the highest traditions as the new industry standard.

We live in Interesting times.

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About Gopi Sekhar

Gopi Sekhar has over 33 years of work experience involved in a wide range of activities from commercial trading, manufacture and processing of palm oil and Rubber to Research and Development in polymers, recycling and sustainable solutions.
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