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Manufacturing PA Initiative grant to improve glass recycling technology

By Liz Carey, Pennsylvania Business Report

New funding that is part of the Manufacturing PA Initiative will help students at Pennsylvania State University promote higher glass recycling rates in Pennsylvania.

The project, “Enabling Improved Glass Recycling Technology and Modeling Tools,” is one of 36 projects across the state in the program to receive a portion of the $2.3 million in funding. The projects aim to advance innovation in several manufacturing sectors, organizers said. Penn State professor of materials science and engineering, John Mauro, will serve as the project’s principal investigator as the school partners with Remark Glass to address technical challenges facing glass recycling.

“I am excited to partner with Remark Glass to help find solutions to expand glass recycling opportunities and reduce the amount of glass waste going into landfills,” said Mauro. “This funding will also provide a unique opportunity for one of our graduate students.”

While glass is, in principle, very recyclable, it must first be sorted by color or by material – such as Pyrex or Gorilla Glass – to ensure glass cullet can be easily manufactured into new products with the desired optical properties.

The grant for the partnership between Penn State and Remark Glass will fund one graduate student to work closely with Mauro and Remark to thoroughly characterize different colors and compositions of glass cullet and develop predictive models that will allow for the use of mixed color and composition cullet. Predictive models will be developed and delivered to Remark that will enable the use of mixed-color and mixed composition cullet, as well as tailer-design some glass products and processes for use with recycled glass.


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