Ford Incorporates Recycled Bottles To Reduce Waste

With over 1.2 billion recycled water bottles used per year, the Ford Motor Company is taking steps to further reduce its environmental impact. By utilizing these existing materials rather than having new ones made from scratch. By eliminating the plastic waste that can come from water bottles, Ford is continuing it’s goal of eliminating its carbon footprint.

The bottles are broken down and converted into a textile-like fiber material that can then be used to create automotive parts. These parts are more lightweight and used for SUVs and F-Series trucks. Most recently, these materials are being used in the 2020 Ford Escape. These lighter parts are aerodynamic and can reduce sound for a quiet and smooth ride. Specific parts include underbody shields and wheel arch liners.

“The underbody shield is a large part, and for a part that big, if we use solid plastic, it would likely weigh three times as much,” said Thomas Sweder, a design engineer with Ford Motor Company. “We look for the most durable and highest performing materials to work with to make our parts, and in this case, we are also creating many environmental benefits.”

By using this recycled plastics for useful purposes, these bottles can avoid the environmentally damaging fate of so many wasted pieces of plastic: ending up in the Pacific Gyre. The Pacific Gyre or North Pacific Subtropical Gyre is a massive patch of garbage covering roughly 20 million square kilometers.

Programs like Ford’s are essential to reducing future contributions to this trash island, and working to become more environmentally conscious overall.

Categories: Technology
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