Polish researchers develop method to recycle pharmaceutical packaging

Researchers from the University of Łódź, central Poland have patented an innovative method to effectively recover aluminum and polyvinyl chloride (PVC) from pharmaceutical blister waste.

The new method of recycling will help protect the environment against poorly degradable plastic materials.

Professor Marek Zieliński, head of the research team, says that thanks to the method, two raw materials can be recovered from large amounts of blister waste materials, as well as from unused blisters, withdrawn from production due to the bacteriological infection. The recycled aluminium and PVC can be used again.

The entire technological process is waste-free.

The blisters are sorted according to the colour of the PVC used to make them, and then they are ground to achieve the most appropriate granulation. Later, the recycled material is placed into a hermetically sealed prototype container where a liquid substance, that will separate the blister components, is added.

Researchers from Łódź have filed patent applications for the process for separation of waste components of pharmaceutical blisters and the container they have developed.

The Polish invention won the gold medal at the International Invention and Design EXPO (KIDE) 2018 in Kaohsiung, Taiwan and also received a special award from the Toronto International Society of Innovation & Advanced Skills.