In an update on its plans to build a chemical recycling plant for polystyrene at its Tessenderlo, Belgium site, Trinseo has announced that the progress of the project is on track.
In late 2021, Trinseo contracted with global technology provider Synova and global engineering services company Worley, and is currently working on an engineering package and preparing the site for recycling operations.
The company selected Synova’s technology, a chemical recycling approach invented by the Netherlands Organization for Applied Scientific Research (TNO), which is able to process municipal solid waste, including mixed plastic waste. It removes 99.9% of unwanted tars and uses the energy value to create a highly efficient process with a better CO2 footprint, that serves numerous applications.
Worley delivers project and asset services for the energy, chemicals, and resources sectors around the world. The company provides expertise in engineering, procurement, and construction, as well as consulting services.
Both companies have a very strong commitment to sustainability, said Francesca Reverberi, SVP and Chief Sustainability Officer. “This alignment was critical for us as we continue our journey and goal of delivering sustainable material solutions, while maintaining high quality and performance.”
Construction is expected to begin by the end of 2022. The plant will be dedicated to recycled polystyrene (rPS) and process 15 kilotons of rPS flakes annually. PS is one of the most widely used plastics and, due to its simple chemistry, can be easily converted to its monomer.
The resulting recycled styrene monomer will be used to produce recycled polystyrene of virgin quality and/or a styrene derivative such as ABS or SAN can be produced.
The construction of the Tessenderlo recycling facility is part of Trinseo’ s commitment to circularity in plastics. Besides being a founding member of Styrenics Circular Solutions and an active member of over 60 industry and trade associations, Trinseo has been an advocate for mass balance processes, essential to providing sustainable plastics solutions. The company recently announced an offtake agreement for recycled styrene with recycler Indaver, the acquisition of recycler Heathland B.V., and the introduction of bio-attributed PS, ABS and SAN.