London – Materials consultancy Artis, part of Avon Rubber, has launched a sustainable materials group, aiming to bring together recyclers, materials producers and end users over sustainability issues.
Launched on 18 Jan, the group is currently at its embryonic stage, Dr Chris Norris, Artis analytical services manager, explained in a telephone interview to ERJ.
Much of the group’s interest will be focused on recovered carbon black (rCB), as Artis has recently completed an international benchmarking study of pyrolysis carbon to gauge the current quality and availability of these materials.
According to Norris, despite higher interest in pyrolysis in the market recently, there are challenges in the way of making the material more mainstream.
“Oil prices are a major problem. Carbon black is an oil-based product and when oil prices are low, rCB is less economically justifiable,” said Norris.
Another problem is the relatively lower volumes available.
“Currently rCB accounts for less than half a percent of current global carbon black production,” he noted.
Artis is currently working with the rCB D36 committee of ASTM (the US-based American society for testing and materials) to put standards in place to regulate the quality of these materials.
This, it hopes, will allow access to a greater volume of quality material with known performance criteria.