Gallone led the company’s ICARRE 95 innovative car recycling project, which aimed to develop cars and components, 95% of which could be recycled back into material at the end-of-life point. The project is the result of a collaboration with start-up companies and universities.
Foam and textiles were the focus of Gallone’s presentation. He said between “2010 and by 2015 we achieved 96.3% recovery from end-of-life vehicles.”
A rich source of material
The automotive waste stream is a rich source of materials for recycling, Gallone said. He explained that each year 1.5m cars are taken off French roads and scrapped.
A number end up in Illegal scrapyards, he explained. Part of the ICARRE 95 project was to work with “legitimate recyclers to develop best practice and ways to reuse materials so that they can be reused in an eco-design by manufacturers.”
“It is vitally important to start dialogues with the people involved in automotive recycling very early on,” he told delegates. Renault started the project in 2009 and quickly realised “just how complex the recycling world is, he added”
In addition Gallone said: “We worked closely with the engineering department on a demonstrator project with a number of metals. It is important that the engineering department accepts the use of recycled raw materials as well as virgin raw materials.
“This is because the engineering department will be responsible for specifying the materials which will be used in future.”
“Renault use approximately 42kT/year recycled plastic,
although the objective is greater than 50kT/year of recycled polypropylene."
Renault's Toni Gallone,
“A second, but equally important aim of this project is to demonstrate that there are opportunities to develop new economic recycling systems and processes that can become sources of competitiveness for all of those involved in end-of-life vehicle-management.
“The kick-off of ICARRE 95 coincided with the availability of second-hand parts to Renault’s dealers,” he said.
“For example Renault use approximately 42kT/year recycled plastic, although the objective is greater than 50kT/year of recycled polypropylene.
“We have developed different projects under the ICARRE 95 programme including ValVer, which is for glass and ValTex for fabrics and a third stream for non-ferrous metals. Around 80% of the polymers in a car by mass are polypropylene and around 2% by weight are polyurethane.
“It’s most important advance is to put together a new industrial scheme to recycle materials into a new product and the ICARRE 95 project gave us an idea of how this could work and some examples of the practice.
"It is important to design for easy recycling and then spread the best practice of how to do this across the web of recyclers at end-of-life vehicle centres. There are 1,800 of these in France, he told delegates."
Foam and textiles pose quite different questions to metals in terms of recycling. The first question to be answered is: “What is your organisation for collection?”
“[Secondly,] what is the maximum fill level of recycled material in the new component? And finally, how can we work with different partners to produce a worthwhile and different form of collection.
“Solutions include a transport passport and we have put in place different solutions for different qualities of material, he said.
For foam and textile recycling, Gallone said, there are three drivers. “The first is defining and characterising the base materials.
The next question is how they are mixed and what other materials are they mixed with. The third most important point is how to optimise the recycling process to get the very best out of materials in an economic way.
“For the textiles and foams we have promoted different partners the first choice for dismantling and life vehicles, the second will work in a different actors to separate shred and transform into a different product that can be used in different applications.
“Everybody here knows different products contain different poisonous substances. CBDD or DecaBDE are now considered poisonous and there is a European requirement to limit their use,” said Gallone.
“Beyond these approaches we have a number of demonstrative steps to persuade engineers to accept these materials from end-of-life vehicles rather than use virgin materials.
“There are a number of different applications.” He referred to a Renault and Johnson Controls collaboration to develop a material woven for seat covers from 70% recycled materials and end life materials.
“We have realised different prototypes that can use the material in non-seating applications such as noise barriers and acoustic insulation but it is more important to draw up lists of, monitor and control the different poisonous materials to show that all the materials conform to modern requirements.
“What is next? There will be more collaborative projects to recycle vehicles at the end of their lives,” he said. “We have to collaborate because knowledge and innovations lies within different companies with different know how.”
“The issues the industry faces in this process are complex. They range from how to access the materials within an end-of-life vehicle, through logistics and to draw up the toxicity issues of end-of-life materials and to optimise the intrinsic function. We must demonstrate and brief car makers that they have the capacity to recycle raw materials.”
He added that a number of universities were on board with the project to draw different developments with this sort of raw material.