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IBM Research Scientists Ground-breaks on Converting Noxious Plastics into Promising Future Applications

Almaden lab in San Jose

Every year, the world generates more than 2.7 million tons of a plastic made out of polycarbonates. Now, IBM Research announces that researchers from the Almaden lab in San Jose, Calif. have discovered a new, one-step chemical process that converts polycarbonates into plastics safe for water purification, fiber optics and medical equipment.

In its latest study, IBM Researchers added a fluoride reactant, a base (similar to baking powder) and heat to old CDs to produce a new plastic with temperature and chemical resistance superior to the original substance. When the powder is reconstructed into new forms, its strength prevents the decomposition process that causes BPA leaching.


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