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The possibility of recovering and recycling an increasingly large fraction of plastics in municipal solid waste without having to separate them by their chemical types is the goal of a planned three-year research project underway at the University of Texas in Austin.

Funded by a $62,142 research grant from the Office of Solid Waste Management Programs, Environmental Protection Agency, the project will seek to develop a method of solving the crucial problem of recovering, from a common source, three major polymers that are chemically incompatible with each other: polyethelene, polystyrene, and polyvinyl.