Nextek has won the IOM3’s Circular Economy Award with COtooCLEAN, a unique supercritical carbon dioxide (ScCO2) cleaning process, which effectively and efficiently cleans and decontaminates post-consumer polyolefin films to a food-grade status.
COtooCLEAN was picked from a wide range of excellent innovations recognised as transformational in the sectors of the Circular Economy and Enabling Net Zero Sustainable Materials Technology.
The cutting-edge solution to boost the circularity of food-grade films uses ScCO2, a non-toxic, non-flammable and non-corrosive solvent that can selectively remove contaminants through use of co-solvents.
In a single step, the process targets the simultaneous removal of oils, inks, adhesives, labels and chemical contamination from post-consumer polyolefin films, while recycling the non-toxic solvent and separating the residues.
COtooCLEAN aims to address the current roadblocks to recycling plastic films, which so far has been held back by the absence of a technology to decontaminate post-consumer polyolefin films (LDPE, LLDPE, HDPE and PP) back into food-grade material.