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Flinders University — Many modern plastics, rubbers and ceramics cannot be recycled, but new polymers made from waste sulfur are promising to solve one of the planet’s biggest recycling problems – and even create new industries of the future.

Researchers around the world have taken the next step to develop a range of these versatile and recyclable materials by controlling and improving their physical and mechanical properties to make them closer to scale up for manufacture.

Sulfur polymers are already being used in next-generation batteries, IR imaging (such as night-vision lenses), environmental remediation, and agriculture, but it has been difficult to control the hardness, flexibility, colour and other key properties of these polymers.

A new study reported in Chemistry – A European Journal identifies design principles that can better control the properties of these polymers, making them more adaptable and attractive for other types of manufacturing.

Read more at: Flinders University

Flinders University PhD candidate Nicholas Lundquist (left) and Dr Justin Chalker (right) with a field sample of PFAS contaminated water. (Credit: Flinders University)

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