Design and Technology Exhibition: Riu Fukazawa

Title of Major Work: Plastic recycling system using barcodes

“Currently, plastic recycling is an extremely uneconomical process as there is no effective way to identify and differentiate plastic types,” Riu said.

“Most plastic sorting today is done by hand, an extremely ineffective and costly solution. As a result, only about 5 per cent of plastic waste is recycled in Australia. For mixed plastics from residential sources, recycling is even lower. Most plastic waste goes to landfill.”

“My solution to this is to use barcode technology to automatically, accurately and economically identify the plastic type of an item. Currently, the system sits on top of the recycling bins in households/apartments. But it could be implemented in a wide variety of environments. This improves upon accuracy and economicality through automation of the process.”