Infichem aims to double production of recycled polyols to 900 tonnes a year Report by Liz White, editor
Chrysler Group is using recycled polyols made by a ground breaking process based on polyurethane foam scrap. Developed by Infichem Polymers lie these recycled materials are used in the seat foam for Chrysler’s 2011 Jeep Grand Cherokee.
The move is the culmination of a programme that started ten years ago (box below), when Chrysler developed some concept cars and put a lot of recycled materials into them, said Jerry Winslow, Infichem Polymers’ vice-president of sales & marketing.
“Chrysler … is the first automobile maker in the world in production using this process and to have launched it commercially,” he said.
This use gained the car maker an Environmental category award from the SPE (Society of Plastics Engineers) for 2010, Winslow pointed out, Ibrahim Sendijarevic, ceo of Infichem, based in Sterling Heights, Michigan, pointed out that the company is not doing what other companies have done: taking production waste and using glycolysis to reprocess it.
“Our process is not just glycolysis. We also use a propoxylation step which enables us to make a product that is more consistent and adjust the properties of the polyol to meet the demands of specific PU applications.”
Infichem’s goal is twofold, Sendijarevic said: to establish a recycling process for foamers, and also to produce a polyol which is widely available to the PU industry.