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Nanomaterials and advanced materials in a circular economy and effects on recycling processes

In recent years, more and more manufactured nano materials (MNM) and advanced materials (AM) have been used in products, and as a result, they are increasingly generated as waste. What happens with these nanomaterials at the end of their life cycle and how they behave in the circular economy is largely unknown.

The Nano Cycle project provides support to make the fate of synthetic nanomaterials and advanced materials in the circular economy (e.g. PET bottles and plastic packaging containing nanomaterials) more transparent and to improve their management in the waste stream or during recycling.

The project's holistic approach brings together questions about waste streams with questions about recycling and the necessary analytics. Systemic processes in the waste management of packaging plastics are examined holistically and possible exposures and challenges across the supply chain analysed. Finally, operational perspectives for an improved and innovative cooperation between innovation research and safety research are developed, especially for cooperation in later life cycle phases of products containing nanomaterials. Ideally, this will lead to an improvement in the potential for closed-loop recycling management and recycling in connection with MNM and AM.

Key Words: Manufactured Nano Materials (MNM), Advanced Materials (AM), Waste streams, recycling processes, closed loop recycling management 

Start: October 2018

Duration: 12 months

Funded by: FFG/ BMNT, BMVIT

Contact: Manuela Kienegger