So just how do you recycle an airplane?
Some interesting airplane recycling facts:
- After the removal of the reusable pieces and decontamination of the chemistries, the remaining bulk of the airplane has a value of €150/ton.
- 25 to 35% of an aircraft is non-metallic materials, including flooring, insulation, plastics, glass and rubber.
- Of the metals, 85% is alloyed aluminum, 10% is steel, 3% titanium and 2% copper.
The Châteauroux-Déols airport, originally an American miliary installation following the Second World War, was chosen for its central location. It is already a center for aircraft maintenance and repair. The new recycling center is built according the French standard for installations classified for the protection of the environment: for example, the dismantling field is underlain by an impervious liner beneath the concrete and liquids run to a collection system with a hydrocarbon separator. The site is in the process of obtaining certification to the ISO14001 Standard for Environmental Management Systems (which cannot be obtained until the facility has demonstrated some months of operation). The facility is currently scaled to dismantle two planes at a time, with the potential to expand foreseen.