AMP Robotics, provider of AI technology for the waste and recycling industry, has extended its partnership with Evergreen, a North American producer of food-grade recycled polyethylene terephthalate (rPET).
Evergreen has 15 of AMP’s robotic sorting systems guided by AI installed or planned across three facilities. In addition to six robots in Clyde, Ohio, Evergreen has added six in Riverside, California, and will soon add three in Albany, New York. The partnership said this was the largest known deployment of AI-guided recycling robots in North America.
AMP’s technology identifies and sorts green and clear PET from post-consumer bales of plastic soft drink bottles, at speeds up to three times faster and at a higher accuracy than manual sorters can achieve. Evergreen then recycles the material into reusable flakes or pellets, which it sells to end markets as feedstock for new containers and packaging.
With AMP’s robots focused on refining the quality of material, separating plastics more precisely by colour, Evergreen has seen an improvement in purity along with pick rates of up to 120 bottles per minute—an increase of up to 200%. The robots are removing up to 90% of contamination, on average, across different lines at Evergreen’s Clyde facility.
Evergreen reported its annual capacity of rPET has grown to more than 147 million pounds, up from 40 million pounds one year ago, following the expansion and infrastructure investment. Evergreen has also increased the number of post-consumer PET bottles it collects and recycles, from two billion PET bottles annually to 11.6 billion bottles.
“Evergreen is a leader in the transformation of recycling processes, and its application of AI-guided sortation is increasing plastic recycling rates and helping to close the loop on PET,” said Matanya Horowitz, founder and CEO of AMP Robotics.
“Evergreen’s repeat orders of our systems is a testament to the operational benefits of our AI and automation solutions, and we’re proud to play a role in the company’s expansion and modernisation efforts.”
Furthermore, AMP’s AI platform can identify and capture plastics including high-density polyethylene, low-density polyethylene, polypropylene, and polystyrene, sorted further by colour, clarity, and opacity, along with different form factors—lids, tubs, clamshells, cups, and more.
AMP’s technology also recovers cardboard, paper, cans, cartons, and many other containers and packaging types reclaimed for raw material processing. It can quickly adapt to container packaging introduced into the recycling stream with recognition capabilities to the brand level—increasingly critical as demand for sufficient quantities of high-quality recycled material grows to meet consumer packaged goods companies’ commitment to use of post-consumer recycled content.