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Article

Development of a Physical Separation Route for the Concentration of Base Metals from Old Wasted Printed Circuit Boards

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Environmental Metallurgy Laboratory, Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul, 9500 Bento Gonçalves Avenue, Porto Alegre 91501-970, Brazil
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Mineral Processing Laboratory, Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul, 9500 Bento Gonçalves Avenue, Porto Alegre 91501-970, Brazil
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Departament d’Enginyeria Minera, Industrial i TIC, Escola Politècnica Superior d’Enginyeria de Manresa, Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya, Av. Bases de Manresa 61-63, 08242 Manresa, Spain
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Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Chiharu Tokoro
Minerals 2021, 11(9), 1014; https://doi.org/10.3390/min11091014
Received: 29 August 2021 / Revised: 16 September 2021 / Accepted: 17 September 2021 / Published: 18 September 2021
Wastes from old electronic devices represent a significant part of the electronic scrap generated in developing countries, being commonly sold by collectors as low-value material to recycling hubs abroad. Upgrading the quality of this waste type could drive the revenue of recyclers, and thus, boost the recycling market. On this basis, this study investigated the possibility of concentrating metals from old wasted printed circuit boards through a physical separation-based route. Preparation of samples comprised fragmentation, size classification, density, and magnetic separation steps, followed by chemical and macro composition analysis. Cu, Al, Fe, and Sn constituted the major metals encountered in the scraps, including some peak concentrations of Zn, Sb, Pb, Ba, and Mn. Four distinct concentrate products could be obtained after suitable processing: (a) a light fraction composed of plastics and resins; (b) an aluminum concentrate; (c) a magnetic material concentrate, containing mainly iron; (d) a final concentrate containing more than 50% in mass of copper and enriched with nonferrous metals. Preliminary evidence showed that further processes, like the separation of copper wires through drumming, can potentially improve the effectiveness of the proposed processing circuit and should guide future works. View Full-Text
Keywords: old scrap; electronic wastes; physical separation; recycling; printed circuit boards old scrap; electronic wastes; physical separation; recycling; printed circuit boards
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MDPI and ACS Style

de Buzin, P.J.W.K.; Ambrós, W.M.; de Brum, I.A.S.; Tubino, R.M.C.; Hoffmann Sampaio, C.; Oliva Moncunill, J. Development of a Physical Separation Route for the Concentration of Base Metals from Old Wasted Printed Circuit Boards. Minerals 2021, 11, 1014. https://doi.org/10.3390/min11091014

AMA Style

de Buzin PJWK, Ambrós WM, de Brum IAS, Tubino RMC, Hoffmann Sampaio C, Oliva Moncunill J. Development of a Physical Separation Route for the Concentration of Base Metals from Old Wasted Printed Circuit Boards. Minerals. 2021; 11(9):1014. https://doi.org/10.3390/min11091014

Chicago/Turabian Style

de Buzin, Pedro J.W.K., Weslei M. Ambrós, Irineu A.S. de Brum, Rejane M.C. Tubino, Carlos Hoffmann Sampaio, and Josep Oliva Moncunill. 2021. "Development of a Physical Separation Route for the Concentration of Base Metals from Old Wasted Printed Circuit Boards" Minerals 11, no. 9: 1014. https://doi.org/10.3390/min11091014

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