SGPU until today

Nº of vehicle tires treated:

Avoided emissions (t CO2eq):

Energy consumption avoided (GJ):

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Solutions for Used Tires


Recycling agents utilize used tyres as raw material and are particularly interested in the vulcanized rubber. After being processed, the end products that come out of recycling are: textile, steel and rubber crumb in different sizes, which is sold for various purposes, such as: athletic facilities paving, different types of enclosures, children playgrounds, Rubber Modified Bitumen, etc.

Two of the best known processes for recycling used tyres are:

  1. The mechanical process consisting in the mechanical shredding of tyres. Rubber is fragmented in a series of grinders and mills, with steel being removed through magnetic separation and textile separated by differences in density. At the end of the process, rubber crumb is divided into different ranges, according to crumb size, passing through sieves with different mesh sizes.
  2. The cryogenic process – uses liquid nitrogen to freeze rubber at the approximate temperature of -160ºC inside a cryogenic tunnel, which enables fragmentation of the rubber and the production of fine rubber crumb. The tyre first endures mechanical grinding and afterwards its fragments are transported to the cryogenic tunnel, where the entry temperature of nitrogen is approximately -192ºC and the rubber exit temperature is about -80ºC. After passing through the cryogenic tunnel and pneumatic sledge hammers, the steel and textile contained in the tyre are separated from the rubber through magnetic separation and suction, respectively.

Concerning the obtained end products, steel is sold to companies that process metals (recycling), textile, which until recently was dumped in controlled landfills, is currently possible to use for energy recovery, while rubber crumb is used, for instance, for the production of athletic facilities pavements, namely football pitches, tartan tracks, different types of sports facilities and children playgrounds.

Finer rubber crumb can be incorporated in the production of asphalt (Rubber Modified Bitumen) to build or repair roads.

For more information see:

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