Recycling-oriented methodology to sample and characterize the metal composition of waste Printed Circuit Boards

Abstract : As one of the most valuable components in waste electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE), the recovery of spent printed circuit boards (PCBs) is economically and strategically relevant. However, their composition drastically changes depending on location, year and the type of appliance in which they were used. For the development of new treatment processes, representative sampling of spent PCBs from large samples is necessary and their raw material compositions should be accurately determined. This study aimed at characterizing spent PCBs by implementing milling, sampling and leaching with an adequate reagent. Sampling was performed on 526 kg of spent PCBs, to obtain different samples milled at 750 µm in order to achieve metal accessibility. These samples were leached by aqua regia and metal contents in the leach solutions were determined. Metal analyses in 40 grams-samples of spent PCBs showed limited composition variation for most metals towards the different samples. Furthermore, a good accordance was found with other studies reported in the literature.
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https://hal.univ-lorraine.fr/hal-02182965
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Agathe Hubau, Alexandre Chagnes, Michel Minier, Solène Touzé, Simon Chapron, et al.. Recycling-oriented methodology to sample and characterize the metal composition of waste Printed Circuit Boards. Waste Management, Elsevier, 2019, 91, pp.62-71. ⟨10.1016/j.wasman.2019.04.041⟩. ⟨hal-02182965⟩

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