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Resources Recycling through Products
- Reducing in Resources Used
Use of Recycled Resources
Technology that makes full use of resources
Panasonic develops technologies to extract the maximum amount of resources from used products and use these resources as materials in the manufacture of new products. For example, we developed a technology that processes glass extracted from cathode-ray tube (CRT) TVs into vacuum insulation materials that are widely used in a variety of products, including refrigerators and hot water pots. We also have molding and material recycling technologies to recover degraded plastics from used products and use them in new products. We will continue to accelerate the development of such recycling technologies.
Utilizing glass from used CRT TVs
Glass makes up about 60% of the total weight of CRT TVs. Until recently, the part of the recycled CRT of TVs was reused to create new CRT TVs. However, with the rapid shift to flat-panel TVs and the end of analog broadcasting, demand for CRT TVs have fallen dramatically, reducing the recovery value of CRTs.
We launched a proprietary reprocessing technology that converts glass from used CRT TVs into glass wool fibers to make the vacuum insulation materials for refrigerators. First, a laser is used to remove the CRT from recovered TVs, and after crushing and dry scrubbing, the glass is transformed into cullets (bits of glass). The cullets are then melted at once in a temperature exceeding 1,000℃ and subjected to micro-fabrication of approx. 4 μm. Reusable glass wool is created at the end of this process. This is the first case for a home appliance manufacturer in Japan to recycle CRTs for use in the production of other home appliances.
Use of recycled plastics
Panasonic is one of the leading companies to use recycled plastics. Panasonic Environmental Technology Solutions Co., Ltd. distributes recycled plastics mainly from air-conditioners, TVs, refrigerators and washing machines. Total use of plastics in fiscal 2012 for washing machines and refrigerators was 35,786 tons, including 4,392 tons of post-consumer recycled plastics, the ratio of which was approx. 12%. We aim to use more than 6,000 tons of recycled plastics mainly in our home appliance products including washing machines and refrigerators in fiscal 2013.
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