MOSCOW (MRC) -- PureCycle Technologies Inc.'s years-long effort to commercialize solvent-based recycling technology for polypropylene is virtually complete, said Sustainableplastics.
And the company's CEO believes that lessons learned from the company's flagship Ironton facility will serve the company well as the firm looks to replicate locations elsewhere — both in the United States and internationally.
PureCycle's journey, from an idea patented by consumer products company Procter & Gamble Co. to a full-fledged production site in Ironton, has had its share of ups and downs. That's for sure.
CEO Dustin Olson readily admitted the realities of the last few years during an on-site interview. But he also believes production in Ironton will wipe away any long-standing questions about the viability of the company and serve as a springboard.
PureCycle uses a solvent-based technology to purify polypropylene, stripping away the fillers and additives and odors along the way to create a virgin-like resin branded Ultra-Pure Recycled, or UPR, plastic by the company.
To follow PureCycle is to understand the company has missed a series of promises to begin production over time. And Olson said that's on him.
"This has been a struggle. I'm not going to lie. I have underestimated the timing for this plant. Some of that ... I should have seen, some of it was out of the blue," Olson said.
"I always give the information to the best of my ability every time. Sometimes I'm right. Sometimes I'm wrong. On this project I would say I leaned on the overoptimistic, but then things happened that prevented us from achieving that," he said.
"There's no doubt that the original dates were hyper aggressive. I think everybody recognizes that. And we've been chasing it," he said. "I think that missing dates is not good. I've got to do a better job." Delays included parts for an extruder being blown up in Ukraine due to Russia's invasion of that country as well as other more mundane supply chain issues. Olson also pointed to what he called minor engineering mistakes.
We remind, PureCycle Technologies Inc.'s flagship polypropylene recycling facility in Ironton, Ohio, is "days away" from beginning the start-up phase of commercial pellet production.