CSP Investigator Melissa Maurer-Jones, alongside Professor Brian Hinderliter of the University of Minnesota–Duluth Department of Mechanical & Industrial Engineering and Dr. Margaret Elmer-Dixon have launched Phos Technology, an imaging initiative that detects early stage degradation of plastics.
The team has designed a system that consists of a portable device and image-processing software for tracking the degradation of plastics. This rapid, non-intrusive, and portable solution offers a potentially cost-efficient and replicable method for monitoring the deterioration of polyethylene and polypropylene materials.
It utilizes Nile Red as a fluorescent probe, with shifts in fluorescence spectra corresponding to chemical and physical changes in the plastics.These shifts are influenced by the type of polymer but are not affected by the thickness of the polymer film.
The image-processing software establishes a connection between the changes in fluorescence spectra and a carbonyl index, which is employed to characterize the plastics. This technology boasts various applications, such as predicting maintenance needs for plastic components and enhancing plastic sorting processes to advance recycling efforts.
For more details, visit https://phos-tech.com/what-is-phos-imaging.