This paper reports the results on the use of an innovative inert, based on stabilized fly ash from municipal solid waste incineration as a filler for polypropylene. The starting material, which contains large quantities of leachable Pb and Zn, was stabilized by means of an innovative process using rice husk ash as a waste silica source, together with other fly ashes, such as coal fly ash and flue gas desulfurization residues. The use of all waste materials to obtain a new filler makes the proposed technology extremely sustainable and competitive. The new composites, obtained by using the stabilized material as a filler for polypropylene, were characterized and their mechanical properties were also investigated. A comparison with a traditional polypropylene and calcium carbonate based compound was also done. This research activity was realized in the frame of the COSMOS-RICE project, financed by the EU Commission.
Keywords: fly ash; melt compounding; polypropylene; rice husk ash; stabilization process.