Can plastic recycling be fixed?

| December 5, 2019

article image
The problem was massive in scale, but Matanya Horowitz, then a graduate student at the California Institute of Technology, thought he might have a fix. The year was 2012. Plastic recycling facilities were not only expensive, but also horribly inefficient as most of the waste ended up in landfills. But as he watched artificial intelligence advance autonomous vehicles and facial recognition, Horowitz wondered if AI-powered robots could do the job of human pickers to lower costs and reduce contamination — the bane of recycling. “If you are reducing the cost and can show customers the quality of what they’re buying, you can create a liquid commodity market where right now there’s a guy running around with a clipboard,” said Horowitz, CEO of the Colorado startup AMP Robotics, which has robots at two dozen recycling facilities around the country, including one in Austin. “It’s a green war.”

Spotlight

Wintershall

Wintershall is an international energy company specializing in the exploration and production of natural gas and crude oil – for over than 85 years. We focus on core regions where we have built up a high level of regional and technological expertise: Europe, North Africa, South America, Russia as well as the Middle East. Today, the company is Germany’s largest crude oil and natural gas producer and employs worldwide about 2,000 staff from more than 50 nations. It is a wholly owned subsidiary of the chemical group BASF in Ludwigshafen and its headquarter is based in Germany (Kassel).

OTHER ARTICLES

What's the Most Toxic Chemical?

Article | February 24, 2020

People say America doesn’t make things anymore. But what about toxic chemicals? We make so many of those, we throw half of them in rivers, for free. The problem is, it can be hard to get a handle on which of those chemicals are extremely toxic and which of them are merely somewhat toxic. If one or another shows up in a scan of your stomach, should you freak out or just be grateful it wasn’t something worse? For this week’s Giz Asks, we reached out to a number of experts to find out what the most toxic chemical is.

Read More

Optimizing chemical production using data-driven, AI-enabled hybrid modeling

Article | March 13, 2020

Smart use of your plant’s data can take process efficiency to a higher level. Hybrid models driven by artificial intelligence deliver the best results for the least effort. And you don’t need a data science degree to enjoy them. Data is everywhere these days – and the volumes of it are growing exponentially all the time. We’re used to smart uses of it in our everyday lives. Like Amazon and Netflix using our past behavior to tempt us with new products or shows, even making them more appealing by tailoring how they look based on carefully constructed, data-driven profiles of our tastes. Much of that heavy lifting is done by artificial intelligence (AI). In chemical production, process control systems have been collecting data measurements during continuous or batch manufacturing for decades.

Read More

Coronavirus and the petrochemicals industry

Article | April 2, 2020

The coronavirus outbreak has touched virtually every aspect of modern life. For the petrochemicals industry, the landscape is shifting at an alarming pace. Only one thing seems certain: the coming decade will be shaped by this crisis. Consumer behaviour, investment decisions, the corporate landscape and even the path of globalisation will be influenced by its effects. Two immediate major shockwaves are linked to economic activity and feedstock pricing. The global economy is heading for recession. Our thinking has moved from an economic slowdown to a deep global recession, with the potential for a slow recovery. This has dramatic implications for the industry.

Read More

PROCUREMENT CHALLENGES IN THE CHEMICAL INDUSTRY : WHAT CPOS’ MUST STRIVE TO COMBAT

Article | February 25, 2020

The global chemical industry currently represents one of the largest worldwide interacting sectors delivering essential materials to several major industries including pharmaceuticals, agriculture, manufacturing and construction, and automotive. This is an indicator of the fact that any major changes in the chemical industry could also significantly affect these related sectors. Procurement is an unceasing challenge for companies across various sectors, and procurement in the chemical industry is no exception.

Read More

Spotlight

Wintershall

Wintershall is an international energy company specializing in the exploration and production of natural gas and crude oil – for over than 85 years. We focus on core regions where we have built up a high level of regional and technological expertise: Europe, North Africa, South America, Russia as well as the Middle East. Today, the company is Germany’s largest crude oil and natural gas producer and employs worldwide about 2,000 staff from more than 50 nations. It is a wholly owned subsidiary of the chemical group BASF in Ludwigshafen and its headquarter is based in Germany (Kassel).

Events