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Acta universitaria

versión On-line ISSN 2007-9621versión impresa ISSN 0188-6266


VEGA, Etzail et al. A bezel of an automotive headlamp: scrap/virgin ratio effects on its physicochemical properties due to the use of recycled polycarbonate. Acta univ [online]. 2016, vol.26, n.3, pp.50-62. ISSN 2007-9621.

Automotive bezels of polycarbonate (PC) were prepared in this work by varying the amount of recycled polymer in order to estimate an acceptable scrap/virgin ratio that maintains the material properties. Conducted tests allow us to define the limit to don't compromise the performance of recycled pieces. The studied properties were their chemical structure, molecular weight distribution, mechanical and surface properties of the samples. Results showed no change in the chemical structure of PC chains. However, variations in molecular distribution was observed by the addition of recycled material. Last one ascribed to chain scission at the carbonyl group of the PC molecules, and the formation of physical cross-linking as a consequence of degradation due to injection process. Both stiffness and surface properties of the material increased as the percentage of recycled PC rose. Therefore, although the chemical structure of the PC is preserved during the recycling process, fluid and elastic properties are modified limiting their operating conditions and industrial tolerance. Conducted analysis allows to establish that the addition to virgin PC of 20% of recycled material don't affect the physical-chemical properties of pieces, also maintains the quality standars of cosmetics tests.

Palabras llave : Polycarbonate (PC); recycling; automotive housing; scrap/virgin ratio.

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