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Componentes Mecanicos de Matamoros

Year Submitted: 2003

Process: Molding Plastics

Industry: Plastics

Wastes Reduced: Plastic Materials

Equipment: Grinder, Separator

Location: Matamoros MEXICO

No. of employees: 3173

Contact: Marcus Suarez


Componentes produces plastic instrument panels, steering wheels and air bags for a number of different GM cars. A large amount of scrap plastic (foam, vinyl and a formulation called Dylark 250P20) generated in cutting out the molds for the instrument panels was seen as a significant problem.

P2 Application:

The key to the success of the project was a cross functional team composed of general supervisors, engineers, production supervisors, maintenance, environmental and hourly workers. Cooperation with ARCO (raw material supplier) and corporate personnel was also important. Because the scrap is a mixture, separation of the various plastics was important for reuse and recycling. The team identified that specific gravity differences could be used to separate the foam, vinyl and Dylark. A Triple/S Dynamics Fines Floater was purchased that was capable of separating these plastics using fluidized air. No waste is generated in the separation step. The Dylark compound is reused on site and the vinyl and foam is sent to a recycler. (Jet Plastics in Brownsville, Texas)

Environmental Benefits:

Approximately 125 tons (8,000 yd3) of plastic per year no longer goes to a landfill because of the project.

Details of Reductions

Additional Information :

The reuse of plastic has not resulted in any negative impacts on quality of the product, and the regrind mixture is the same quality as the normal regrind. The total costs of installation was about $30,000 and the savings by reuse of the Dylark alone is estimated at $643,000 per year. ($383,000 in material savings and $260,000 n shipping cost avoidance.) Project payback was 16 days.

Source: TCEQ

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