Sepro Urban Mining has worked closely with electronic waste specialists to maximize metal recovery from electronic sources. Electronic waste (e-waste) is a growing problem, but it also presents an opportunity to recycling plants looking for new ways to grow. E-waste is full of reusable metals – gold, silver, and copper just to name a few. Using our system of metal recovery, recycling centres can process e-waste to recover the valuable metals inside, and sell them to refiners, giving them an added stream of revenue. 

Metals You Can Recover From Printed Circuit Boards

Printed circuit boards (PCBs) are especially difficult to process since they are full of small components, plastics, harmful elements and other waste material, along with high-value metal. Some of the metals you can find inside PCBs are:

  • Copper
  • Gold
  • Silver
  • Platinum
  • Nickel
  • Aluminum
  • Tantalum

Recovering the valuable metals for resale is complex and can also be quite unsafe. Many recycling centres may look like they are using best practices, when in reality, they ship this waste to lower income countries. With the lack of environmental, and worker health and safety laws, PCBs are burned in the open air, exposing the environment and local populations to unsafe chemicals. This not only puts workers and communities in a poor state of health, it also doesn’t recover the fine particles of precious metals found in PCBs. Sepro Urban Mining is actively working to change this so optimal metal recovery can happen in a responsible manner. 

How Does Our Metal Recovery Work?

First the PCBs need to be broken down before any metal recovery can take place. They are crushed and fed to a thermal treatment system that breaks down and captures the harmful chemicals. 

The PCBs are then disintegrated in a mill, turning everything into a slurry. During this stage, the first metal recovery can take place as high-value copper concentrate is liberated and recovered. The remaining slurry is made up of a variety of fine precious metals which can be recovered by specialized gravity concentration equipment.

Gravity Concentration Is A Safe And Effective Way To Recover Precious Metals

Using both low and high G gravity concentrators, Sepro Urban Mining can recover gold, silver, PGMs, and other valuable metals from the PCB slurry. The gravity concentration rejects are dewatered and disposed of as non-hazardous waste, keeping their communities free of any toxic byproducts. 

Once the metals have been processed, recycling centres can sell their metal concentrates to refiners at a profit.

Do you work at a recycling centre and are looking for new ways to grow? Contact Sepro Urban Mining to find out how easily our metal recovery system can be implemented into your current recycling process.