Development of scientific recycling of End of Life Automobiles in India and the role of Research and Development

A Research Study on “Development of Scientific Recycling of ‘End of Life’ Automobiles with special focus on rubber, plastics and residues in India- The role of Research and Development” was undertaken by INAE under the auspices of Principal Scientific Advisor (PSA) to Govt. of India with Captain NS. Mohan Ram, VSM, Indian Navy (Retd), FNAE &  Consultant, TVS Motor Company Limited as the Principal Engineering Investigator and Dr. Basudam Adhikari, IIT Kharagpur & Mr. S.Sugumar, Central Institute of Plastics Engineering as the Members.

The objective of the Research Study was to develop systems for recycling rubber and plastics and to carry out Research and Development on recovery of useful materials from auto shredded residue (ASR) and minimize the extent of residues going into refills. The Study was conducted in three phases. Phase 1 focussed on collection of data on Recycling of ELV’s- automobile production, population, ELV generation, extent of material recoveries, and ASR generation over the next twenty years.  Phase 2 focussed on development of laboratory scale processes for material recovery from dismantling non-metallic elements like rubber, plastics, ceramics etc. and proposals for deploying the methods to industrial scale.  Phase 3 was  concerned with identification of processes for recovery of useful materials and energy from ASR and minimizing the final residues which require landfills. The Report on “Development of Scientific Recycling in India and the Role of Research and Development’ has been brought out recently.  A hard copy of the subject report was presented to Dr. R Chidambaram, Principal Scientific Adviser to the Govt. of India by Dr BN Suresh, President, INAE, during a meeting at New Delhi on Feb 23, 2016.

Dr BN Suresh, President, INAE presenting a copy of the report to Dr R Chidambaram

The issue of environmentally friendly disposal of end of life vehicles has assumed center stage consequent to the deteriorating air quality in our cities and judicial pronouncements limiting the age of vehicles. These issues have been duly addressed in the report which deals with R&D required on disposal of rubber and plastics and reduction of recycling residues, which are very important in the long run for India. The report has resulted in pertinent, actionable, recommendations on automotive recycling in general and also generated specific recommendations on the methodologies for disposal of rubber, plastics and auto shredder residues.

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