Experience

RECIPNEU is an SME settled in Sines since 2000 that produces recycled polymers (rubber granulates), from end-of-life tires.

RECIPNEU has been certified in its Quality (Portuguese Standard NP EN ISO 9001: 2008), Environment (Portuguese Standard NP EN ISO 14001: 2004), and Occupational Health and Safety (OHSAS 18001: 2007) Management Systems.

RECIPNEU has an installed capacity of approximately 25,000 tons / year of used tires, and the implemented technology is the Cryogenic Process. This innovative technology, quite rare in the recycling industry of European tires, is able to produce high-quality cryogenic rubber granulates, which stand out from the others, obtained by other technologies, for their high mechanical, chemical and environmental performance.

The main applications of cryogenic granulate include the following:

  • Sports surfaces – rubber infilling for artificial turf football fields, and horse arenas;
  • Asphalt rubber for road pavements;
  • Raw material for the industry.

The company’s worldwide exports include over 70% of its total production, and over 90% of products for the filling of artificial turf football fields.

The dispute in technically sophisticated markets exponentially raises the standard of competitiveness, and the context where products are designed, manufactured, packed, stored and transported, inexorably determining their success. Sines, or in a more inclusive approach, the Alentejo coastal area, appears as a territory that can enhance integrated development and its subsequent competitiveness, where several factors emerge, some already established and others starting to assert themselves.

Recipneu views the active participation in the integrated development of the region as a way to maximize its own sustainability, as well as the sustainability of collective organizations.

Location

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About Recipneu

Mission

Production of Cryogenic Rubber Powders and Granulates and the profitable valorization of all materials resulting from end of life tires recycling, through applications with market value and benefits perception.

Position

RECIPNEU assumes a leader position in cryogenic granulates quality and customer’s satisfaction.

This is the outcome of a Vision:

To provide unique products with intrinsic value both to the Customer and the Society, through highly advanced technological processes, which are all together economically viable, environmentally sustainable and ethically exemplar.

This vision is accomplished by a balanced strategy of short and long term targets, grounding in:

  • Research and development as tools for innovation;
  • Continuous training;
  • Preventive maintenance;
  • Market’s segmentation;
  • Positive discrimination of the cryogenic granulate;
  • Reasonable and emotional value to the Customer;
  • Company’s Valuation and sustainability.

RECIPNEU is aware of the importance that its products and activities confer either to Society or Environment. RECIPNEU’s code of conduct assumes Quality, Environment, Safety and Health policies as its tenets; the company understands such values as a requirement for productivity, competitiveness, and ethical sustained development.

Technology

RECIPNEU successfully implemented Cryogenic Technology for tire recycling – an innovation in Europe, both in terms of technology and products.

The industrial process takes place in three stages:

  1. Shredding raw material.
  2. Cryogenic processing.
  3. Bagging and storage

1. Shredding raw material

This stage consists of fragmenting light and heavy tires into small, homogeneously cut pieces – the “chips”.

2. Cryogenic processing

This process performs the complete and individualized separation of rubber, steel and textiles without noticeable waste or losses in material. This is a continuous, automatically controlled process which takes place under an inert nitrogen atmosphere.

2.1 Stages of the process

2.1.1 – Cryogenic cooling
The chips are dropped into a long cryogenic tunnel, and are cooled down by the action of liquid nitrogen, at around -196ºC, resulting in a cold exchange between the chips at room temperature and the liquid nitrogen. When the chips are cooled to a temperature of -80º C, the glass transition point (Tg) is reached for all the rubber polymers, so “rubber” behaves like glass.

2.1.2 – Cryogenic grinding
Under an inert and very cold atmosphere, the chips, “frozen” at -80ºC, are submitted to an extremely intense impact, of special hammer mills with very high impact energy, causing the instantaneous fragmentation of the rubber in small granules of various sizes.

2.1.3 – Separating the various materials, drying, sorting and purifying the end product.
The following steps lead to the completion of the process:

  • Magnetic separation of steel;
  • Drying the granulated rubber;
  • Sieving the rubber into different standard sizes;
  • Elimination of dust and steel contaminations

3. Bagging and storage

From the cryogenic line, the obtained granulates move on to various silos, where they are put into Big Bags of synthetic raffia fiber with approximately weight of 1,15 Ton, double nylon strapped over wooden pallet. The packaged product is then stored until delivery.