Microplastics in artificial turf

We have become ever more aware that microplastics in rivers and oceans pose a great danger to fish and other marine life. These ultimately end up on our plates and in the food cycle. Also, the number of microplastic particles in our tap water and mineral water is steadily increasing and we are already absorbing them every day.

More and more artificial turf is being used in sports field construction but this leads to 250-300 kgs of microplastics being discharged every year from a modern artificial turf pitch. Currently, in Ireland thousands of tonnes of microplastics are being released into our environment through the use of artificial grass and this will continue unless the particles are filtered out and retained somehow.

Where’s the problem?

Plastic/rubber granulate & synthetic blades of grass end up in the environment. Through rainfall, wind and weekly maintenance, as well as regular training and matches, microplastic particles of the granulate and blades of grass, are carried off these pitches and end up in the surrounding environment in fragments.

If you have ever played sports on an artificial turf pitch, you know the small particles collect themselves in sportswear and shoes. Most artificial turf pitches consist of several layers: Drainage, with an elastic layer on top, followed by long synthetic fibres stabilised by a rubber granulate filling. This special rubber granulate provides the necessary cushioning and the desired playing characteristics on the turf.

What’s the solution?

Microplastic deposits from an artificial turf can be significantly reduced through the use of filter solutions. SPORTFIX CLEAN is a safe and effective solution for the filtration and retention of microplastic particles. In this system particles as small as 0.45 µm (0.00045 mm) are reliably filtered out by the filter substrate Carbotec 60. The filter substrate consists of natural, inorganic components.

The use of SPORTFIX CLEAN is an important measure to reduce microplastics in rivers, lakes, oceans and the environment.

Other pollutants contained in the precipitation water such as sand and clay particles and organic components such as leaves, pollen and grasses as well as heavy metals or hydrocarbons filtered out. Retention capacities of over 95 % are achieved.

SPORTFIX®CLEAN channels offer a simple but extraordi­narily simple solution. The channels safely collect not only surface water flowing off the sports field contaminated with microplastics, but also larger microplastic parts transported to and collected along the edge of the pitch during play. The water is collected and drained off in the channel run, while being fed through the channel filter and filtered at the same time.


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