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Characterization of Fine Metal Particles Derived from Shredded WEEE Using a Hyperspectral Image System: Preliminary Results

Institute for the Electromagnetic Sensing of Environment, National Research Council, 20133 Milano, Italy
Institute of Industrial Technologies and Automation, National Research Council, 20133 Milano, Italy
Department of Psychological, Health and Earth Sciences, G. D’Annunzio University, 66031 Chieti, Italy
Department of Mechanical Engineering, Polytechnic of Milan, 20156 Milano, Italy
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Radislav A. Potyrailo
Sensors 2017, 17(5), 1117;
Received: 30 January 2017 / Revised: 10 May 2017 / Accepted: 11 May 2017 / Published: 13 May 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue State-of-the-Art Sensors Technologies in Italy 2016)
PDF [6195 KB, uploaded 17 May 2017]


Waste of electric and electronic equipment (WEEE) is the fastest-growing waste stream in Europe. The large amount of electric and electronic products introduced every year in the market makes WEEE disposal a relevant problem. On the other hand, the high abundance of key metals included in WEEE has increased the industrial interest in WEEE recycling. However, the high variability of materials used to produce electric and electronic equipment makes key metals’ recovery a complex task: the separation process requires flexible systems, which are not currently implemented in recycling plants. In this context, hyperspectral sensors and imaging systems represent a suitable technology to improve WEEE recycling rates and the quality of the output products. This work introduces the preliminary tests using a hyperspectral system, integrated in an automatic WEEE recycling pilot plant, for the characterization of mixtures of fine particles derived from WEEE shredding. Several combinations of classification algorithms and techniques for signal enhancement of reflectance spectra were implemented and compared. The methodology introduced in this study has shown characterization accuracies greater than 95%. View Full-Text
Keywords: hyperspectral sensor; fine metal particles; WEEE recycling hyperspectral sensor; fine metal particles; WEEE recycling

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Candiani, G.; Picone, N.; Pompilio, L.; Pepe, M.; Colledani, M. Characterization of Fine Metal Particles Derived from Shredded WEEE Using a Hyperspectral Image System: Preliminary Results. Sensors 2017, 17, 1117.

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