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Redundant tire and rubber compound reprocessing

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Redundant tire and rubber compound reprocessing


The invention provides for methods, systems, and devices for processing rubber materials including rubber from tires, tubes, shoe soles, or any other rubber containing product. Characteristics of the rubber materials, such as chemical composition and/or product manufacturer, model, and manufacture date, can be identified. Identification can be performed by personnel, can be automated, or can be a combination thereof. The characteristics of the rubber material can be used to sort the rubber product. Rubber materials suitable for a particular end product can be selected for further processing, which can include size reduction, material separation, chemical and physical processes, devulcanization, or a combination thereof. Processed rubber materials can be stored or delivered to a user or manufacturing site with product specifications.

Inventors: Alan Higginson, David Higgingson, Rachel Aucock, Brete C. Harrison
USPTO Applicaton #: #20120318898 - Class: 241 30 (USPTO) - 12/20/12 - Class 241 
Solid Material Comminution Or Disintegration > Screens >Miscellaneous

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The Patent Description & Claims data below is from USPTO Patent Application 20120318898, Redundant tire and rubber compound reprocessing.

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CROSS-REFERENCE

This application is a continuation application of U.S. patent application Ser. No. 13/343,642, filed Jan. 4, 2012, which is a continuation application of U.S. patent application Ser. No. 12/628,947, filed on Dec. 1, 2009, which is a continuation-in-part application of U.S. patent application Ser. No. 12/476,211 filed on Jun. 1, 2009, which claims the benefit of priority to U.S. Provisional Patent Application Ser. No. 61/058,122 filed on Jun. 2, 2008, which are incorporated by reference herein in their entirety, and to which applications we claim priority.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

Automotive tires and other rubber products are often difficult to dispose. Further, many recycling procedures have been proposed or are in use to handle these rubber materials. However, most of these procedures provide an end product that is lower in quality than the original rubber material. As such, much of the recycled rubber is used for alternative uses, such as playground floors, running tracks, and various padding or rubber structures or devices.

It would be a significant advance in the art if a recycling process for waste rubber, such as old automotive tires, provided an end product having a defined composition and capable of being used to manufacture new products demanding very good rubber quality. For example, it is desirable in the art to develop a process that can recycle used automotive tires for the partial manufacture of new automotive tires. The objective of delivering high quality rubber end products from recycled rubber has proven difficult, however, the processes described herein provide a novel approach to manufacturing high quality products from recycled rubber.

SUMMARY

OF THE INVENTION

The invention provides for methods, systems, and devices for processing rubber materials including rubber from tires, tubes, shoe soles, or any other rubber containing product. Characteristics of the rubber materials, such as chemical composition and/or product manufacturer, model, and manufacture date, can be identified. Identification can be performed by personnel, can be automated, or can be a combination thereof. The characteristics of the rubber material can be used to sort the rubber product. Rubber materials suitable for a particular end product can be selected for further processing, which can include size reduction, material separation, chemical and physical processes, devulcanization, or a combination thereof. Processed rubber materials can be stored or delivered to a user or manufacturing site with product specifications.

The personnel for identifying the input materials and/or overseeing the process can be trained to follow regulatory standards and/or any other standards. The personnel can be trained to identify the composition of the input material using any of a number of analytical techniques. The analytical techniques can be any analytical technique known to one skilled in the art.

The rubber materials can be processed such that contaminants, toxic materials, metal, or any other undesirable material is removed. The rubber materials can be processed such that the processed rubber product can be used in a selected process or for a selected product. In some embodiments of the invention, the rubber is processed such that the product will meet selected specifications. These specifications can include size, composition, mechanical properties, or any other characteristic described herein.

Equipment used to process the rubber materials can include rotary shears, conveyors, troughed out feed conveyors, dividing chutes, dividing conveyors, pre-shredders, magnetic tables, granulators, overband magnets, elevating conveyors, zig zags, cyclones, grids, and meshes. Other equipment used to process the rubber materials, described herein or known to one skilled in the art, can be used to process rubber materials.

INCORPORATION BY REFERENCE

All publications and patent applications mentioned in this specification are herein incorporated by reference to the same extent as if each individual publication or patent application was specifically and individually indicated to be incorporated by reference.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

The novel features of the invention are set forth with particularity in the appended claims. A better understanding of the features and advantages of the present invention will be obtained by reference to the following detailed description that sets forth illustrative embodiments, in which the principles of the invention are utilized, and the accompanying drawings of which:

FIG. 1 demonstrates assessment and selection procedures for manufacturing new products from recycled rubber.

FIG. 2 illustrates a high-level depiction of a controlled processing system in accordance with an embodiment of the invention.

FIGS. 3A, 3B, 3C, and 3D demonstrate an exemplary system wherein after raw material, such as waste or redundant rubber, is selected by a process of the invention carried out by trained personnel, the specified raw material is delivered and loaded for a first shredding process. The bottom of FIG. 3A continues at the top of FIG. 3B. The bottom of FIG. 3B continues at the top of FIG. 3C. The bottom of FIG. 3C continues at the top of FIG. 3D.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

OF THE INVENTION

Methods and processes are described herein that are useful in generating objects from redundant or recycled rubber, such as material to be substituted for new rubber and/or used rubber in the manufacture of tires. In an aspect, a process comprises: assessing redundant tires and/or waste rubber materials according to a compound formulae of the waste materials; and selecting materials to be separated from the waste materials, wherein the material is selected for the manufacture of an object; and separating the selected tires and/or waste rubber materials, wherein said separation is for processing the separated material for the particular end uses predetermined for the specific qualities of the selected redundant tires. This process may be undertaken in a novel way using electronic identification systems that select the tire in accordance with its known composition.

The processes and systems described herein may require significantly less energy, such as heat energy, cooling, and the addition of chemicals to generate a recycled rubber material than current methods of rubber recycling. In an embodiment, the processes and systems can reduce a carbon footprint and improve the sustainability of a rubber recycling method.



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Solid material comminution or disintegration
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stats Patent Info
Application #
US 20120318898 A1
Publish Date
12/20/2012
Document #
13594749
File Date
08/24/2012
USPTO Class
241 30
Other USPTO Classes
International Class
02C19/00
Drawings
7



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