Analytical Sciences

Abstract − Analytical Sciences, 37(1), 145 (2021).

Latest Trends in Pyrolysis Gas Chromatography for Analytical and Applied Pyrolysis of Plastics
Shogo KUMAGAI and Toshiaki YOSHIOKA
Graduate School of Environmental Studies, Tohoku University, 6-6-07 Aoba, Aramaki-aza, Aoba, Sendai 980-8579, Japan
Pyrolysis is considered to be a promising method for polymer characterization (in the field of analytical pyrolysis) and for chemical feedstock recovery from plastic wastes (in the field of applied pyrolysis) because it can decompose any polymeric material into smaller molecules by applying heat alone in an inert atmosphere. Pyrolysis–gas chromatography (Py-GC) involves pyrolyzing polymeric materials in a micropyrolyzer and a subsequent direct GC analysis of pyrolyzates. Py-GC has immense potential for applications in the fields of both analytical and applied pyrolysis, as it allows for rapid and accurate analysis of pyrolyzates. This is beneficial for elucidating microstructure and composition of polymers and for a rapid screening of pyrolysis conditions for designing feedstock recycling processes. In this review, we examined the latest research trends in Py-GC applications for polymer characterization, analysis of plastics in the environment, and chemical feedstock recovery from plastics.