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M. Arshadi, S. Yaghmaei, and S. M Mousavi (2018)

Content evaluation of different waste PCBs to enhance basic metals recycling

Resources, Conservation and Recycling, 139:298-306.

This research aims to expand the body of information that researchers require before starting electronic waste (E-waste) recovery experiments. With this purpose, the basic metal contents, alkalinity, polymer components, iron magnetic separation, metal recovery priority and economic values of different types of waste printed circuit boards (PCBs) were investigated. The selected wastes were computer PCBs (CPCBs), CPCBs with wires, mobile phone PCBs (MPPCBs), television PCBs (TVPCBs), fax machine PCBs (FPCBs), copy machine PCBs (COPCBs) and central processing units (CPUs). These E-wastes were prepared in the three fraction sizes of F1<1 mm, 1 < F2<3 mm, and 3 < F3<8 mm to evaluate the metal contents of different PCB fractions. The plastics of some samples were separated through the shaking table method. Magnetic separation of the iron particles attributed the highest amounts of separated iron to the CPCBs (84%) and MPPCBs (76%). Among the investigated E-wastes, the TVPCBs and CPCBs had the highest percentages of plastic (68 and 57%, respectively). Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy declared the presence of polyphenylene oxide (PPO) and polycarbonate (PC) in all evaluated PCBs. The highest quantities of Cu, Ag, Ni and Ti corresponded to the F1 fraction for all E-waste samples while the economic values of the E-wastes were as follows: CPU > FPCBs > MPPCBs > COPCBs > TVPCBs > CPCBs. Accordingly, FPCBs and COPCBs were determined as the high value E-wastes for metal recovery. In addition, Cu, Ag and Sn respectively were found to be the most economic basic metals that should be recovered from most PCBs. Finally, pH analysis of the samples demonstrated that E-waste alkalinity is due to the presence of alkaline metals not plastics.

Alkalinity, Basic metals recycling, Economic value, Mechanical processing, Waste PCBs

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The Material Limits of Energy Transition: Thanatia

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This book provides a holistic view of raw mineral depletion in the context of renewable energy transistion.

The material limits Thanatia


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We need a material transition, not only energetic, that restores nature and effectively reuses materials. Gaia must be cared for by extending life on Earth and slowing its degradation towards Thanatia.

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Thermodynamics for Sustainable Management of Natural Resources

Cover Thermodynamics

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This book examines ways of assessing the rational management of nonrenewable resources. Integrating numerous methods, it systematically exposes the strengths of exergy analysis in resources management.

Thanatia: The Destiny of the Earth's Mineral Resources

Cover Thanatia

A Thermodynamic Cradle-to-Cradle Assessment by (author): Antonio Valero Capilla and Alicia Valero Delgado

Is Gaia becoming Thanatia, a resource exhausted planet? For how long can our high-tech society be sustained in the light of declining mineral ore grades, heavy dependence on un-recycled critical metals and accelerated material dispersion? These are all root causes of future disruptions that need to be addressed today.