Industry News

Mura Technology has announced the opening of the first commercial scale chemical recycling plant which will use HydroPRS technology

by | Oct 24, 2023

The UK-based petrochemical company, Mura Technology, is opening a commercial-scale plant in Teesside, which will have the capacity of 20,000 tons of recycled plastic a year.

The facility will be using HydroPRS chemical recycling technology, taking a groundbreaking and innovative step forwards as it becomes the world’s first commercial-scale facility dedicated to focusing on plastic recycling, which utilises hydrocracking technology. This is an incredibly important and promising project, which is expected to deliver its first hydrocarbon products in early 2024.

The purpose of this new facility is to overcome the barrier which currently prevents certain products, such as films, being mechanically recycled. This facility will be able to process flexible and rigid mixed plastics, including films. The hope for the facility is to begin with the annual capacity of 20,000 tons of recycled plastic and to triple its capacity within the near future.

This plants current abilities and its scope for the future have been made possible through Mura’s choice to have the plant operating with HydroPRS instead of pyrolysis. Using HydroPRS is highly beneficial as in contrast to pyrolysis, HydroPRS uses hot, high-pressure water to convert items such as films, pots, tubs and trays, into hydrocarbon feedstocks. These items are all able to be converted as they all fall into the bracket of post-consumer, multi layered, flexible and rigid plastics. A study was done around the new site based in Teesside by Independent Life Cycle Assessments (LCAs) and the assessment displayed the benefits of using HydroPRS technology. One of the benefits shown in the results was that the HydroPRS process prevents 80% of carbon emissions saving, simply by diverting unrecyclable plastic away from incineration. Another benefit of using HydroPRS is that when compared to fossil oil-based feedstock, it becomes clear that HydroPRS produces products with an equivalent or lower Global Warming Potential. On top of this, HydroPRS’s process also saves a maximum of five barrels of oil for every tonne of plastic waste processed.

The plant was officially opened by Mura’s investors at the opening ceremony. These investors included executives from Dow Chemical, LG Chem, igus, and Chevron Phillips Chemical (CPChem).

Mura Technology’s CEO, Dr Steve Mahon commented, “The opening of our first-of-its-kind, next generation recycling facility is a groundbreaking achievement and the culmination of four years of dedication. With support from our partners, the Teesside site will be the first in Mura’s global roll-out, helping in the fight against the plastic pollution and global warming crises and acting as a launchpad for the 1,000,000 tonnes of annual recycling capacity that Mura plans to have in operation and development in this decade.”

Now this innovative plant has been opened and is expected to be a success, so Mura and their partners have begun to develop plans for their next steps and their next project. These projects will include the development of more chemical recycling plants in the US and in Germany. Furthermore, due to partnerships being recently established between Mura and Mitsubishi Chemical Corporation, LG Chem and GS Caltex Corporation, more HydroPRS facilities will be built under licence in Japan and South Korea.

Pin It on Pinterest