Robin-Macmahon Bähre

Title awarding university: Leibniz University Hannover

Cooperation: Continental AG, Deutsches Institut für Kautschuktechnologie

Title of the doctoral project: Degradation behavior of tire abrasion in aquatic ecosystems

Short description of the doctoral project: Tyre abrasion is one of the largest sources of environmental contamination in the form of microplastics worldwide. Despite the demonstrably high particulate and chemical environmental pollution caused by tyre abrasion, there is still little scientific evidence regarding its persistence and the decomposition and degradation mechanisms, especially for aquatic ecosystems. The dissertation will investigate the degradation behaviour of tyre abrasion in aquatic environments by means of systematic degradation experiments synthesising natural environmental conditions. The aim of the work is to identify the essential factors for the mechanical, chemical and biological degradation processes of tyre abrasion in an aquatic environment. In addition to the influence of the material formulation (type of rubber, degree of cross-linking, fillers, etc.), the influence of various environmental conditions (water temperature, oxygen and salt content, light, mechanical stress, etc.) and the influence of particle morphology (particle size, specific surface area, etc.) are to be investigated and the degradation behaviour modelled as a function of the various parameters.

He has received a doctoral scholarship from the German Federal Environmental Foundation (DBU) for his research work.

© Nico Niemeyer