Mercedes-Benz cooperates with BASF and Pyrum to close the recycling loop
Pyrum Innovations AG (Pyrum), a pioneer in the sustainable recycling of end-of-life tires (ELT) based on its patented pyrolysis technology, is closing material cycles together with BASF SE and Mercedes-Benz AG. For this purpose, Pyrum supplies the cooperation partner BASF SE with pyrolysis oil, which is used in combination with biomethane as a raw material in the production of virgin plastics for Mercedes-Benz vehicle components.
Pascal Klein, CEO of Pyrum Innovations AG: “Since the foundation of Pyrum, we have been working on getting closer to a circular economy step by step. In view of finite deposits, the aim can only be to minimise the consumption of natural resources and to use as much recycled raw material as possible in production. The fact that our pyrolysis oil is used as a basis for the production of Mercedes-Benz vehicle components shows the high quality of our products.”
To close the recycling loop for ELT, Pyrum will in future produce pyrolysis oil from discarded tires using its own innovative pyrolysis process. BASF then feeds this into its Verbund at the start of production. In addition, BASF uses biomethane from agricultural waste, a renewable raw material. Using both raw materials, a completely new plastic is created. The combination of pyrolysis oil from ELT and biomethane is used for the first time in the cooperation between Pyrum, BASF and Mercedes-Benz. The plastic is certified according to the so-called “mass balance method”: An independent certification confirms that the partner has replaced the quantities of fossil resources required for the end product with renewable raw materials and pyrolysis oil from ELT.
The use of secondary materials reduces both the use of fossil resources and the CO2 footprint in the manufacturing process. The innovative recycled plastic thus has, for the first time, the same properties as virgin plastic made from fossil raw materials. This makes chemical recycling particularly suitable for the production of components that are subject to high quality and safety requirements.
The first series-production models from Mercedes-Benz will be equipped with door handles this year, in the manufacture of which fossil raw materials have been replaced by biomethane and pyrolysis oil from ELT. The Mercedes-Benz S-Class will also be equipped with a crash absorber made from the recycled plastic material. Further possible applications for the innovative recycled material are currently being explored.