In general, aluminum is a highly recyclable material, and many aluminum products are made using a significant amount of recycled aluminum. The Aluminum Association states that the industry average recycled content of aluminum used in new products is around 70%. Some manufacturers may use even higher percentages of recycled aluminum in their products. In the UK, our suppliers achieve higher than average recycled material than the industry average.
In addition, the manufacturing process is carbon free. Gas-assisted laser cutting is a common method used to cut aluminum and other metals. The two main gases used in this process are oxygen and nitrogen.
Oxygen-assisted laser cutting involves using a stream of oxygen to blow away the melted metal as the laser cuts through the material. This process is typically used for thicker aluminum sheets, as the oxygen reacts with the metal and enhances the cutting process.
Nitrogen-assisted laser cutting is used for thinner aluminum sheets. In this process, a stream of nitrogen is used to blow away the melted metal, but it doesn't react with the metal like oxygen does. This results in a cleaner cut and less risk of oxidation.
In both cases, the laser beam is focused on a small spot on the aluminum sheet, causing it to heat up and melt or vaporize the material. The gas stream then blows away the melted or vaporized metal, allowing the laser to continue cutting through the sheet. This process can create precise cuts and intricate designs in aluminum and other metals.
As the manufacturing facility is powered by renewable energy sources, in both cases no CO2 is emitted in the process.
So what about the waste?
100% Recycled at source. Our aluminum waste is collected and taken to a recycling facility, where it is sorted and processed. The process typically involves melting the aluminum waste down into a liquid form, which can then be used to produce new aluminum products. This process can help to conserve natural resources, reduce energy consumption, and minimize the environmental impact of aluminum production.
OK, OK, so in 50 years time, what is going to happen?
100% recyclable. We can’t predict the price of Aluminium in 50 years time but you can track what’s happened in the last 25 here. More than likely your screens will be worth some value, with multiple candidates willing to pay you to take them away and recycle them.
Composite screening does come from recycled materials, but does that mean the screens themselves can be recycled? We looked into this and predicted it’s a no. Apart from that you can’t currently dispose of them in a dedicated area at the local recycling centre due to the mix of plastic and wood. They will probably end up either going to landfill or worse, incinerated, adding even more CO2 into the atmosphere.
The composite screening that we’ve examined has a good lifespan, but these composites that end up in landfills and not being recycled will be detrimental to the environment by sitting in the ground for many many years.
When you opt for aluminium, you can be sure the lifecycle of the product is 100% recyclable and good for the environment.