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AMP Robotics Updates AI Software To Enable Material Characterization to Improve Recycling


April 27, 2021

AMP Robotics, which develops artificial intelligence, robotics and infrastructure for the waste and recycling industry, has announced AI-powered material characterization software that enables the recognition and classification of recyclables that flow through different recovery stages of the recycling process. This innovation helps provide measurable transparency on the recyclables captured and missed during different recycling processes, as well as confirming the composition of recovered material bales destined for resale to end markets in the supply chain.

“Data transparency in the recycling industry has been a long-standing challenge due to the complexity of mixed material streams, compounded by ongoing changes in consumer packaging,” said Matanya Horowitz, founder and CEO of AMP Robotics. “These obstacles often create impediments to accurate data collection and prevent a clear understanding of what goes into and comes out of the different infrastructure stages that support recycling. Our material characterization software digitizes the real-time flow of recyclables with precision and consistency, providing opportunities to identify gaps in material capture, transparency on what recyclables are and are not recycled, and a basis for standardized measurement vital to improving our national recycling system.”

The new software, AMP Clarity, captures data on mixed plastics such as PET, HDPE, LDPE, PP, and PS; aluminum recyclables such as used beverage cans (UBCs); and fiber, such as corrugated cardboard (OCC) and sorted residential paper and newsprint (SRPN). Material data is collected, classified and sub-classified so material recovery facilities can see what recyclables are flowing through different stages of their operation, AMP Robotics said. This monitoring can help prevent the loss of recyclables to landfills, diagnose gaps in processing efficiency, audit the composition of material streams, and create certainty about final bale content and material quality for both buyers and sellers.

Clarity is offered as a software-as-a-service option via an online web portal that can be accessed through desktop, laptop, and mobile devices. The software is possible through the company’s portfolio of hardware systems, including the AMP Cortex robotic sorting system, and the newly released AMP Vision system. The Vision system is a standalone modular enclosure that can be dropped into a facility’s existing operation for specific data collection from residual, quality control, container, paper, and audit lines. In this way, Clarity can serve as a quality control application for other processing equipment, such as optical sorters or eddy currents to identify recyclables that may have slipped by for capture later in the operation. Clarity could also be placed before the final material quality processing stage to identify contaminants before plastics, aluminum, or paper are baled for resale, the company said.

“The integration of AMP Vision and AMP Clarity provides opportunities for consumer packaged goods companies, retailers, and packaging manufacturers to understand the flow and recovery of their specific containers and packaging,” said Chris Wirth, vice president of business development and government affairs at AMP Robotics. “Our technology can help producer initiatives to increase recycling rates and create new value streams for recyclables, ultimately aiding their pursuit of recycled content goals. Data collection, measurement, and material characterization for recycling also create a mechanism to support federal, state, and local government programs focused on landfill diversion goals and recycled content standards to advance a more circular economy.”

Earlier this month, AMP announced a new deployment of robotic sorting systems with Evergreen, one of the largest recyclers of PET bottles. The company also introduced automated secondary sorting facilities, which apply advanced automation to economically sort through low volumes of residue to recover mixed plastics.

For more details on AMP Clarity, visit the AMP Robotics website.

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