Metal Recovery from Circuit Board Scrap
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Metal Recovery from Circuit Board Scrap Christian Hagelüken Umicore Precious Metals Refining IAER 2004 Summit Phoenix/Scottdale May 13, 2004 WEEE: Sexy? Well, it all depends on your taste Electronic scrap is a complex mix of many different substances: Cu, Ag, Au, Pd, … (valuable?)

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Slide1 l.jpg

Metal Recovery from Circuit Board Scrap

Christian Hagelüken

Umicore Precious Metals Refining

IAER 2004 Summit

Phoenix/Scottdale

May 13, 2004


Weee sexy well it all depends on your taste l.jpg
WEEE: Sexy? Well, it all depends on your taste

  • Electronic scrap is a complex mix of many different substances:

    • Cu, Ag, Au, Pd, … (valuable?)

    • Fe, Al, Ni, Sn, Zn, … (standard metals?)

    • Hg, Be, Pb, Cd, As, Sb, Bi, … (metals of concern!)

    • Halogens (Br, F, Cl, ...)

    • combustibles (plastics)

  •  high risk of environmental damage if landfilled or if not treated in an environmentally sound way

  •  But: WEEE in total contains a lot of metals / resources and represents a true mine above the ground, which must not be wasted

  • Circuit boards are of special interest, since they contain valuable precious metals


  • The value of circuit boards varies significantly l.jpg
    The value of circuit boards varies significantly

    • high grade: Au > 400 g/t

    • medium grade Au 200 - 400 g/t

    • low grade Au 100 - 200 g/t

    • very low grade Au < 100 g/t

    Other precious metals contained: Ag, Pd, (Pt)


    A sophisticated accurate sampling process is needed to determine the true metal content l.jpg
    A sophisticated & accurate sampling process is needed to determine the true metal content

    • Experience and integrity of the precious metals refiner is crucial for reliable assays

    • Foto:

    • Partial view on Umicore‘s circuit board sampling installations at the Hoboken plant near Antwerp/Belgium



    Metals refining is a complex metallurgical disintegration and separation process l.jpg

    Fe intergrated metals refinery

    HC

    Rh

    Zn

    Ir

    Hg

    Pt

    Ni

    Te

    SiO

    Pb

    As

    Ru

    2

    Co

    Cu

    Ag

    Au

    S

    Bi

    Sn

    Se

    Pd

    Sb

    C

    Cd

    Al

    O

    2

    3

    In

    Purified off gas

    Purified waste water

    Umicore

    -Processes

    C

    HC

    Sulfuric

    Depositories

    Metals &

    Energy Recovery

    S

    < 5%/yr

    Acid

    Hg, Cd, ...

    Base &

    Special Metals

    High grade

    Cu,

    Ni

    , Co,

    Sn

    ,

    Pb

    ,

    Bi

    ,

    Precious Metals

    As,

    Sb

    , Se,

    Te

    , In, ...

    Slag as

    Ag

    , Au, Pt, Pd,

    Rh

    ,

    Ir

    ,

    Ru

    Construction mat.

    Output: much more than precious metals

    Input

    Metals refining is a complex metallurgical “disintegration” and separation process

     a complex, problematic feed is systematically worked on and turned into recycled, useful products


    There is more room for optimisation by considering the entire weee recycling chain l.jpg

    Recycled intergrated metals refinerymetals/

    elements

    Collection

    Dis-mantling

    Pre-processing

    Smelting & Refining

    WEEE

    Separated components & fractions

    There is more room for optimisation by considering the entire WEEE recycling chain

    • Streamlined & transparent collection / recycling chain ?

    • Can undesired reuse of devices or components be surely excluded ?(e.g. in case of OEM production scrap)

    • Right & reliable operators and technologies involved ?

    • Separated fractions in marketable quality? Sufficient market demand ?

    • Real economical & ecological benefit of all separation steps ?

      • total chain costs

      • total (precious) metal losses & breakdown per step

      • total final quantity for landfill or incineration


    Optimising the trade off between preprocessing smelting refining l.jpg

    Dismantling intergrated metals refinery& pre-processing

    Preprocessing losses for PM can be between 10-35%

    Investigate for optimisation

    smelting costs

    Costs

    Smelting & refining

    metal losses

    Preprocessing costs (incl. landfill)

    Preprocessing intensity

    E.g. low grade material: paying a gate fee to a smelter can still be a better deal than total costs and value losses by extensive preprocessing

    Optimising the trade-off between preprocessing & smelting/refining

    Eco-efficiency of total chain:How „deep“ for pre-processing ?How „early“ to feed into a smelter/refiner ?


    Much more than pcb recycling from a commodity to customised solutions l.jpg
    Much more than PCB-recycling: intergrated metals refineryFrom a commodity to customised solutions

    • Our integrated metals refinery can treat:

    • populated and unpopulated circuit boards

    • entire small devices after battery removal (e.g. mobile phones, handheld computers etc.)

    • Plastic fractions with (precious) metals

    • Cu- or Fe-based metallic fractions (with/without PM)

    • Components like IC‘s, MLCC, hard disks, contacts, ...

    • ...

    • Within Umicore we also recover Li-ion and NiMH batteries

    Let‘s analyse your material streams and mutually determine the best economical and ecological way

     maximising eco-efficient


    We are committed to eco efficient recycling l.jpg

    Thanks for your attention ! intergrated metals refinery

    Questions ?

    Contact:

    Christian HagelükenThierry van Kerckhoven

    [email protected]

    www.preciousmetals.com

    We are committed to eco-efficient recycling


    Focus on eco efficiency finding the right balance between ecological and economical performance l.jpg

    Environmental efficiency intergrated metals refinery

    Impact on local & global environment (air, water, soil, people, ...)

    Technical

    processes

    & company policy

    Recycling efficiency

    Cost efficiency

    • Impact on resources & on waste reduction

    • economic impact(precious metal yields)

    Economic impact:

     impact on total recycling chain

    Focus on eco-efficiency - finding the right balance between ecological and economical performance

    Recycling cost is not a determinant factor by itself!


    Example the umicore smelter refinery at hoboken antwerp belgium l.jpg

    By-products from smelters and refiners intergrated metals refinery

    Industrial & consumerrecyclable products

    Precious Metals

    Base Metals

    Special Metals

    Chemicals

    Aggregate for concrete

    INPUT

    250,000 tpy

    Example: the Umicore smelter & refinery at Hoboken/Antwerp (Belgium)

    OUTPUT

    Since 1997: extensive refurbishment, new smelter, PM plant & electrowinning; EHS related investments > 50 M€


    In some cases less can be more depending on type of material l.jpg

    Smelting/ intergrated metals refineryrefining

    Landfill &incineration

    Further upgrading

    Cu + PM

    E.g.air flowseparation

    Mixed plastic(+PM)

    Eddy Currentseparation

    Al (+PM)

    Magnetic separation

    Fe (+PM)

    In some cases „less can be more“(depending on type of material)

    Examples for ....

    ... „less“ is benefitial:

    small devices - mobile phones, handheld computers, digital cameras, ...

    ... „more“ makes sense:

    white goods, TV-sets, monitors, PC‘s, ...

    Total costs for recycling chain

    Shredding/size reduction

    Fluff (+PM)

    Dismantling

    Components, casing etc.

    logistics

    PM = Precious metals (Au, Ag, Pd)


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