A pilot line for prepreg scraps recycling was designed and built on a semi-industrial scale. The prototype proved, with an outstanding degree of reliability, the goodness of the developed innovative process and machines.
The process starts with the arrival of prepreg waste at the recycling line. A pre-cutting operation is needed to prepare the scraps for being processed.
The pre-cutted scraps are poured onto a conveyor belt. The belt advances and feeds a cutting station to resize the scraps according to specific dimensions. The output material is made by chips with regular shape (mainly rectangular) and dimensions, according to the machine set-up, ranging from 10 mm to 50 mm.
A batch of re-sized chips are discharged into the hopper of the peeling station. The hopper opens and the peeling process starts. The protective films are removed by the prepreg and send to recycling through an aspiration duct. The peeled chips fall down into an outlet hooper. At the exit of the peeling station, we collect a batch of peeled prepreg chips ready to be used for new products manufacturing.
For assuring that the material has been properly reprocessed, an optical control system is used. The new secondary raw material, by means of a conveyor belt, pass beneath a vision system to detect any anomalies. Only
adequately reprocessed chips are packed at the end of the quality control station. Abnormal chips are discarded.
A freezing unit is used to storage both the inlet material and the new secondary raw material.