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Need to Know

First Star Recycling Retrofits MRF with Help from Closed Loop Fund

The Nebraska company hopes to improve bottlenecks with the retrofit.

First Star Recycling, the Omaha, Neb.-based recycler, has received a loan from the Closed Loop Fund to retrofit its single stream materials recovery facility (MRF) to improve targeting of PET and HDPE.

Two optical sorters and bunkers will be installed and will feed directly into an in-ground conveyer. The sorters will target clear HDPE and PET, and the conveyor will transport recyclables into the baler, which means cages of recyclables will no longer have to be moved by forklift.

Plastics Recycling Update has more information:

The project will yield both quantity and quality benefits on the container line. The line was first installed in 2005 and has relied mostly on hand sorting for plastics. Gubbels noted that the 2007 addition of plastics Nos. 3-7 overwhelmed the MRF container line, resulting in frequent stoppages. Currently capable of sorting about 1 ton per hour, the upgraded container line will tackle about 3 tons per hour, Gubbels said.

Gubbels noted the facility is still accepting 3-7 plastics, and although the market is “not terribly robust,” it’s sending mixed-plastic bales to the recently reopened ReVital Polymers plastics recycling facility (PRF) in Sarnia, Ontario.

Gubbels estimates the company is investing a total of about $2.4 million. That number includes the current retrofit and the installation of a ballistic separator last fall.

Read the full story here.

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