Dalton, GA, July 8, 2014 -- Carpet America Recovery Effort is seeking proposals for a 12-18 month project to demonstrate value-added uses for polyethylene terephthalate (PET) derived from post-consumer PET carpets.
The goals of this project are to develop processes and products and identify viable market outlets for this feedstock.
The scope of the project will cover fundamental materials science and specifications of PCC derived PET as a key feedstock, viable processes for conversion into products, identification of market outlets, and a business plan based on an economic model to get the products into the marketplace.
Prototype products are required to demonstrate proof of principle and market contacts are encouraged. It is expected that a cross-disciplinary team based approach will be part of the proposal.
The only barrier in broadening the deployment of high value nylon made from PCC has been the development of technology to efficiently separate nylon from the other carpet constituents and purify the resultant nylon to levels nearly equivalent to those of post-industrial scrap.
In 2007, CARE data shows that approximately 4% of the PCC stream collected was PET. In 2013, the percentage of PET in the collection stream is now estimated to be 34% and growing. If no solution is found, close to half of all collected PCC will find its way back into landfills at unsustainable costs to recyclers.
Proposals are solicited along one of the following two tracks:
Track 1: Create a viable polymer stream that is usable for carpet or other plastic markets.
Track 2: Find new end uses for rPET that has either been cleaned and/or depolymerized.
The proposal is targeted for duration of 1 to 1.5 years. The proposed start date is academic year 2015 and with an end date of 1-1.5 years.
CARE is looking for a multi-disciplinary team approach.
A CARE selection Committee will review proposals and make a final decision by mid-December 2014.