IBM, Stanford develop new plastic recycling method

Because of limitations in recycling technology, a common type of plastic used in water bottles and food containers weakens so much when it’s recycled that it can’t be used again for the same purpose.

Some small amount of the plastic might make it into another bottle, but more often than not, it instead becomes synthetic carpet or clothing and can’t easily be recycled a second time. So when those products are used up, they end up in landfills.

Researchers from IBM Corp. and Stanford University believe they have developed a way to significantly improve the quality of recycled plastic and strip away those limitations.