Chroma Color’s IR reflecting black technology is based upon a family of complex inorganic pigments (sometimes referred to as mixed metal oxides). This product is referred to as “NIR Black” and is available in a variety of resins that include the most common packaging resins; polypropylene, polyethylene, polystyrene, ABS and PET.
Key features of this color system:
- Inert, heat stable, non-migratory
- Can be used in a variety of polymers
- FDA Approved
Material Recycling Facilities (MRFs) use IR (infrared) and NIR (near infrared) sorting technology to increase yield, improve throughput rates, and increase profitability. The challenge with this technology is its inability to properly identify and accurately sort black colored plastic products. Carbon black absorbs the light emitted from the IR devices and prevents the successful identification of the type of plastic. These unsorted black plastic products are rejected and, in most cases, end up in landfills.
Brand owners have published aggressive sustainability goals requiring a quantum leap in the recyclability of plastic articles. It is not acceptable to loose plastic articles to landfill solely because they are black or very dark in color. Significant resources have been devoted to creating black branded products, and viable practical solutions are required. Rather than sacrificing the brand’s aesthetic desires, the best option is to maintain brand recognition and replace carbon black with an alternative black coloring technology.