Continuous devulcanization of waste tires by using a Co-rotating twin screw extruder: Effects of screw configuration, temperature profile, and devulcanization agent concentration


Correspondence to Ismaeil Ghasemi; E-mail:


Recently, for reasons both economical and environmental, recycling of waste tires based on (styrene butadiene rubber)/(natural rubber) (SBR/NR) has been widely considered. Response surface methodology (RSM) has been used to predict SBR/NR devulcanization behavior in a co-rotating twin screw extruder. In this study, variable parameters were barrel temperature, screw configuration, and content of devulcanization agent. A Box-Behnken design for the three variables, at three levels, was chosen. The sol fraction of devulcanized rubber, Δtorque (difference between maximum and minimum curing torque), and mechanical properties of revulcanizate samples were considered as the responses. The results indicated that an increase of devulcanization agent content at a certain temperature caused the sol fraction to increase. Samples including a higher sol fraction showed a lower cross-link density. Sol fraction for high shear rate screw configuration was lower than that for other screw configurations. Tensile strength of revulcanized rubber showed a decrease with a rise of devulcanization temperature. Moreover, a relationship connecting the residence time in the extruder with stagger angle and length of different kneading blocks were obtained. J. VINYL ADDIT. TECHNOL., 19:65–72, 2013. © 2013 Society of Plastics Engineers