● Collection: The first step is the collection of glass bottles into recycling bins. These are grouped by colors and type and they should be kept separately from other recyclables. This is because glass is fragile, and if it bumps with other hard metals or with each other too much, they may break. Most recycling companies work with drop-off centers that handle the sorting on their behalf at a fee.
● Inspection: The glass bottles are taken through an inspection phase where important checks are done to access if they are worthy of reuse. This includes checking for cracks, permanent stains, or foreign materials like branding paper that may lead to contamination. The structural integrity of the bottles has to be guaranteed for this to make financial sense.
● Sorting: The next important step is sorting, where the glass bottles are separated according to color and type to limit the chances of contamination and breakages. This is done manually by people, and it is usually handled on a converter belt that passes through a row of people weaning gloves, sorting and getting rid of anything that may have escaped the inspection stage. With beer bottles, the two prominent colors include browns and amber green.
● Breaking: The glass bottles are broken down to size to make the recycling process much easier. This is done by a special machine that has over 20 hammers that come down heavily on the glass to break everything down into dust. This process can be dangerous since the glass dust can go airborne, and this can be bad. To counter this, water is added to the process to keep everything grounded.
● Trommel: The rushed particles are now separated by size in a process called trommeling. This is usually done between 3.4 and 3.8 inches. This is done by passing the broken glass through a trommel that moves through revolving screens. In the trommels. There is a set of fans that get rid of stickers and other impurities. The end product is usually fine glass of the same size.
● Bed Drier Fluidization: The glass particles are passed through a dryer that is set to 190 degrees Celsius to get rid of all the moisture. It is also the process where sugars and bacteria are also eliminated to make everything clean and ready.
● Pulverizer: In this process, the glass particles are broken down further using over 36 hammers. The whole process takes place in an enclosed space to stop from going airborne and being inhaled. Once this is done, the glass dust is taken to the rotary screen, and any particles that will be too big to fit are taken back to the pulverizer, where the hammering is repeated again.
● Recycling: The final stage is where the crushed glass is now transformed back into the complete glass. The glass is melted down, and the process of blowing air into the gobs to create the bottle, which will now be ready for distribution. This process uses heat, but not in high amounts when compared to the original glass-making process. The cullet has a lower melting point, and this makes the process much faster and easy to deal with.