Effect of temperature, heating rate and zeolite-based catalysts on the pyrolysis of high impact polystyrene (HIPS) waste to produce fuel-like products

Document Type: Original research


1 Department of Chemical Engineering, Science and Research Branch, Islamic Azad University, Tehran, Iran

2 Department of Polymerization Engineering, Iran Polymer and Petrochemical Institute, Tehran, Iran


Pyrolysis of high impact polystyrene (HIPS) waste has been investigated under different process parameters, such as temperature, heating rate and types of zeolitic catalysts to produce valuable liquid products. Liquid, gas and coke as products of pyrolysis and aromatic, naphthene, olefin and paraffin as liquid components were obtained and their molecular weight distributions were studied with changing the process parameters in a stirred reactor. Aromatic-rich hydrocarbons within the gasoline range were the main pyrolysis products. Type of zeolitic catalysts, temperature and heating rate had significant effects on the products quality and quantity. Non-isothermal mass losses of high impact polystyrene were measured using a thermo-gravimetric analyzer (TGA) at heating rates of 5, 15, 30, 45 and 90°C min-1 until the furnace wall temperature reached 600°C. The DTG (differential thermal gravimetric) curves showed that heating rate had no obvious effect on the degradation trends in the studied range, and by increasing heating rate, the activation energies were decreased obviously from 222.5 to183.6 kJ mol-1.


Main Subjects

  1. Rovere J, Correa CA, Grassi VG, Dal Pizzol MF, (2008) Role of the rubber particle and polybutadiene cis content on the toughness of high impact polystyrene. J Mater Sci 43: 952–959
  2. Grassi VG, Dal Pizzol MF, Forte MMC, Amico SC, (2011) Influenceof small rubber particles on the environmental stress cracking of high impact polystyrene. J Appl Polym Sci 121: 1697–1706
  3. Grause G, Karakita D, Kameda T, Bhaskar Th, Yoshioka T, (2012) Effect of heating rate on the pyrolysis of high-impact polystyrene containing brominated flameretardants: fate of brominated flameretardants. J Mater Cycles Waste Manag 14: 259–265
  4. Parres F, Crespo JE, (2011) Degradation of high-impact polystyrene with processing and its recovery via the addition of styrene–butadiene rubber and styrene–ethylene–butylene–styrene block copolymer. J Appl Polym Sci 121: 574–581
  5. Vilaplana F, Ribes-Greus A, Karlsson S, (2006) Degradation of recycled high-impact polystyrene. Simulation by reprocessing and thermo-oxidation. Polym Deg Stab 91: 2163-2170
  6. Ma Ch, Sun L, Jin L, Zhou Ch, Xiang J, Hu S, Su Sh, (2015) Effect of polypropylene on the pyrolysis of flameretarded high impact polystyrene. Fuel Process Technol 135: 150–156
  7. Abbas-Abadi MS, Haghighi MN, Yeganeh H, (2012) The effect of temperature, catalyst, different carrier gases and stirrer on the produced transportation hydrocarbons of LLDPE degradation in a stirred reactor. J Anal Appl Pyrol 95: 198–204
  8. Abbas-Abadi MS, Haghighi MN, Yeganeh H, (2012) Evaluation of pyrolysis product of virgin high density polyethylene degradation using different process parameters in a stirred reactor. Fuel Process Technol 109: 90–95
  9. Tamri Z, Yazdi AV, Haghighi MN, Abbas-Abadi MS, Heidarinasab A, (2018) The effect of temperature, heating rate, initial cross-linking and zeolitic catalysts as key process and structural parameters on the degradation of natural rubber (NR) to produce the valuable hydrocarbons. J Anal Appl Pyrol, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jaap.2018.05.001
  10. Abbas-Abadi MS, Haghighi MN, (2017) The consideration of different effective zeolite based catalysts and heating rate on the pyrolysis of Styrene Butadiene Rubber (SBR) in a stirred reactor. Ener Fuel 31: 12358-12363
  11. Abbas-Abadi MS, McDonald AG, Haghighi MN, Yeganeh H, (2015) Estimation of pyrolysis product of LDPE degradation using different process parameters in a stirred reactor. PolyolefinsJ 2(1): 39-47
  12. Cullis CF, Hirschler MM, (1981) The combustion of organic polymers. Oxford, Clarendon Press
  13. Abbas-Abadi MS, Haghighi MN, Yeganeh H, Bozorgi B, (2013) The effect of melt flowindex, melt flowrate, and particle size on the thermal degradation of commercial high density polyethylene powder. J Therm Anal Calorim 114(3): 1333–1339
  14. Abbas-Abadi MS, Haghighi MN, Yeganeh H, (2012) Effect of the melt flowindex and melt flowrate on the thermal degradation kinetics of commercial polyolefins.J Appl Polym Sci 126: 1739–1745
  15. Salmasi SS, Abbas-Abadi MS, Haghighi MN, Abedini H, (2015) The effect of different zeolite based catalysts on the pyrolysis of poly butadiene rubber. Fuel  160: 544–548
  16. Abbas-Abadi MS, Haghighi MN, Yeganeh H, McDonald AG, (2014) Evaluation of pyrolysis process parameters on polypropylene degradation products. J Anal Appl Pyrol 109: 272–277
  17. Muenpol S, Jitkarnka S, (2016) Effects of Fe supported on zeolites on structures of hydrocarbon compounds and petrochemicals in waste tire-derived pyrolysis oils. J Anal Appl Pyrol 117: 147–156
  18. Khowatimy FA, Priastomo Y, Febriyanti E, Riyantoko H, Trisunaryanti W, (2014) Study of waste lubricant hydrocracking into fuel fraction over the combination of Y-zeolite and ZnO catalyst. Proced Envi Sci  20: 225–234
  19. Onwudili JA, Insura N, Williams PT, (2009) Composition of products from the pyrolysis of polyethylene and polystyrene in a closed batch reactor: Effects of temperature and residence time. J Anal Appl Pyrol 86(2): 293-303
  20. Owusu PA, Banadda N, Zziwa A, Seay J, N Kiggundu, (2018) Reverse engineering of plastic waste into useful fuel products. J Anal Appl Pyrol 130: 285-293
  21. Mustafa VK, Esber O, Ozgen K, Cahit H, (1998) Effect of particle size on coal pyrolysis. J Anal Appl Pyrol 45: 103–110
  22. Ying GP, Enrique V, Luis P, (1996) Pyrolysis of blends of biomass with poor coals. Fuel 75: 412–418
  23. Zhou L, Wang Y, Huang Q, Cai J, (2006) Thermogravimetric characteristics and kinetic of plastic and biomass blends co-pyrolysis. Fuel Process Technol 87: 963–969
  24. Dhaundiyal A, Singh SB, Hanon MM, Rawat R, (2018) Determination of kinetic parameters for the thermal decomposition of parthenium hysterophorus. Environ Clim Technol 22: 5-21
  25. Cheng YT, Huber GW, (2012) Production of targeted aromatics by using Diels–Alder classes of reactions with furans and olefinsover ZSM-5. Green Chem 14: 3114-3125
  26. Demirbas A, (2005) Recovery of chemicals and gasoline-range fuels from plastic wastes via pyrolysis. Ener Sour 27: 1313–1319
  27. Lee KH, Shin DH, (2003) Catalytic degradation of waste polyolefinicpolymers using spent FCC catalyst with various experimental variables. Korean J Chem Eng 20(1): 89−92