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FEASIBILITY STUDY FOR RECOVERING PRECIOUS METALS FROM E-WASTE.

GROUP MEMBERS

ROPAFADZO JAMAKANGA H1210075N

TINEVIMBO HOMERO H1210565J

TAVONGA GUZURA H1210065D

KUDAKWASHE KANENGONI H1210082C

JONATHAN MADAMOMBE H1210164Y

EFFORT B MUTAUTO H1210129P

TINOTENDA KURWARA H1210065G

SUPERVISED BY

DR PHIRI

MISS MALUNGA
THIS RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT WAS SUBMITTED TO HARARE INSTITUTE
OF TECHNOLOGY IN PARTIAL FULFILMENT OF THE BACHELOR OF
TECHNOLOGY (HONOURS) DEGREE IN CHEMICAL AND PROCESS SYSTEMS
ENGINEERING





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FEASIBILITY STUDY OF RECOVERING PRECIOUS METALS FROM E-WASTE
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ABSTRACT

Printed circuit boards (PCBs) from electronic gadgets at the end of their useful life period are
currently being dumped in landfills or incinerated, causing a serious environmental harm in the
form of toxic gases or leached hazardous compounds. PCBs contain high amounts of precious
metals; about 20 wt% copper, 0.04 wt% gold, 0.15 wt% silver, and 0.01 wt% palladium. The
extraction of these metals from PCBs is both profitable and environmentally worthwhile. Hence,
this study aims to design a commercial process to extract three of these metals, (copper, gold
and silver) from PCBs of computers and mobile phones. The proposed extraction process has
been divided into two stages: (1) physical separation, (2) metal recovery. Stage 1 involves size
reduction followed by the corona electrostatic separator and the hydro-cyclone which separates
metals from non-metals. Stage 2 separates individual target metals from each other by
hydrometallurgical processing. This stage involves leaching and precipitation of the metals into
their separate components. In a bid to develop an environmentally friendly technique for
recovery of precious metals from electronic scrap, a critical comparison of main leaching
methods is analyzed from both economic and environmental impact perspective. Experimental
results have shown that cyanide leaching is the best leaching method for this researchs target
precious metals from PCBs, on the basis of the economics, process applicability and
recyclability.
Keywords: Printed circuit boards (PCBs), recovery,
















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DECLARATION
We, Effort B Mutauto, Tinotenda P Kurwara, Jonathan Madamombe, Tinevimbo H
Homero, Ropafadzo Jamakanga, Tavonga Guzura and Kudakwashe Kanengoni hereby do
declare that this work has not previously been accepted in substance for any degree and is
not being concurrently submitted in candidature for any degree.


Student Signature:
Effort B Mutauto .
Tinotenda P kurwara ..

Jonathan Madamombe .
Kudakwashe Kanengoni

Tavonga Guzura
Ropafadzo Jamakanga

Tinevimbo H Homero ....
Date / /



Supervisors Signature:

Dr Phiri ..


Miss Malunga .
Date / /














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COPYRIGHT

All rights reserved. No part of this project may be reproduced, stored in any retrieval
system, or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical,
photocopying, recording or otherwise from scholarly purpose, without the prior written
permission of the authors and of Harare Institute of Technology on behalf of the authors.



















































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DEDICATION

We dedicate this piece of work to our families, we appreciate their love, care, patience
and support.



















































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ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

We would like to thank our supervisors Dr Phiri and Miss Malunga for their guidance through
which we managed to come up with this project. We would also like to thank Mr A Mukuya for
his encouragement, technical support and time sacrificed helping us. Our sincere gratitude goes
to all lecturers in the CPSE Department, Materials Department, CPSE laboratory staff,
families and friends for without them it would have been impossible for us to acquire the
knowledge and be able to undertake this project. Above all, we would like to thank the almighty
God for his tender mercy and for strengthening us in making this project a success.












































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ABBREVIATIONS

CPSE Chemical and processing systems engineering
EEE Electrical and Electronic Equipment
EMA Environmental Management Act
E-waste Electronic waste
HIT Harare Institute of Technology
ICTs Information Communication Technologies
PCBs Printed Circuit Boards
SMEs Small and Medium Enterprises
WEEE Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment
ZIMSTAT Zimbabwe National Statistics Agency

































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TABLE OF CONTENTS
ABSTRACT ................................................................................................................................i
DECLARATION .......................................................................................................................ii
COPYRIGHT ........................................................................................................................... iii
DEDICATION ..........................................................................................................................iv
ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS ....................................................................................................... v
ABBREVIATIONS..................................................................................................................vi
LIST OF TABLES....................................................................................................................xi
LIST OF FIGURES.................................................................................................................xii
CHAPTER 1: INTRODUCTION ..............................................................................................1
1.1: Background ....................................................................................................................1
1.2: Problem statement ........................................................................................................... 2
1.3: Significance of the study ................................................................................................. 2
1.4: Justification......................................................................................................................3
1.5: Hypothesis of study.........................................................................................................3
1.6: Aim..................................................................................................................................3
1.7: Objectives........................................................................................................................3
CHAPTER 2: LITERATURE REVIEW....................................................................................4
2.1: Introduction.....................................................................................................................4
2.2: Health effects of electronic waste....................................................................................6
2.3: Current processes.............................................................................................................6
2.4: Separation of the individual valuable metals...................................................................8
2.5: Pyrometallurgical processes............................................................................................8
2.6: Bio leaching.....................................................................................................................9
2.7: Hydrometallurgical separation ......................................................................................10
2.8: Leaching agents ............................................................................................................. 11
2.8.1: Economics .............................................................................................................. 11
2.8.2: Process Applicability ..............................................................................................11
2.8.3: Toxicity...................................................................................................................11
2.9: Thermodynamic aspect of leaching .............................................................................. 11
2.10: Chemistry of cyanidation ............................................................................................13
2.11: Effect of cyanide concentration .................................................................................. 13


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2.12: Effect of hydrogen ion concentration .......................................................................... 14
2.13: Precipitation with zinc.................................................................................................14
2.14: Reaction chemistry ...................................................................................................... 14
2.15: Cyanide concentration ................................................................................................. 15
2.16: Zinc concentration ....................................................................................................... 15
2.17: Temperature ................................................................................................................15
2.18: Effect of pH .................................................................................................................15
2.19: Thiosulphate leaching ................................................................................................. 15
2.20: Effect of Na2S2O3 concentration .................................................................................16
2.21: Precipitation ................................................................................................................16
2.21.1: Sodium borohydride .............................................................................................16
2.21.2: Precipitation with sodium sulphide ...................................................................... 16
2.22: Leaching with HCL and HNO3 mixture (aqua regia) .................................................
17
CHAPTER 3: RESEARCH METHODOLOGY......................................................................19
3.1: Interviews ......................................................................................................................19
3.2: Questionnaires ............................................................................................................... 19
3.3: Field work .....................................................................................................................20
3.3.1: E.M.A .....................................................................................................................20
3.3.2: Zimstat ....................................................................................................................20
3.3.3: Mbare magaba ........................................................................................................ 20
3.3.4: Research based on peoples activities to electronic gadgets domestic users: ...... 20
3.4: Results ...........................................................................................................................21
3.5: Materials and experimental procedure .......................................................................... 21
3.5.1: Dissolution of PCBs ...............................................................................................21
3.5.2: Recovery of metals by cyanide leaching and precipitation .................................... 22
3.5.3: Recovery of metals using aqua regia ...................................................................... 23
CHAPTER 4: RESULTS AND DISCUSSIONS .................................................................... 25
4.1: Survey results ................................................................................................................25
4.2: Dissolution 1 results ...................................................................................................... 26
4.3: Dissolution 2 results ...................................................................................................... 27
4.4: Calculations ...................................................................................................................28
4.5: Cyanide leaching ...........................................................................................................30

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4.6: Precipitation ..................................................................................................................31
4.7: Aqua regia leaching and precipitation........................................................................... 31
4.8: Analysis of results ......................................................................................................... 32
CHAPTER 5 PROCESS DESIGN ..........................................................................................36
5.0: Introduction ...................................................................................................................36
5.1: Block flow diagram ....................................................................................................... 36
5.2: Mass balance .................................................................................................................37
5.3: General mass balance equation .....................................................................................37
5.4: Overall mass balance..................................................................................................... 38
5.5: Energy Balance ............................................................................................................. 39
5.5.1: Overall balance for process ........................................................................................40
5.6.: Process flow diagram ................................................................................................... 41
5.7: Process description ........................................................................................................ 42
5.7.1: PCB sampling and dismantling ..................................................................................42
5.7.2: Separation techniques................................................................................................. 42
5.7.2.1: Electrostatic separator .........................................................................................42
5.7.2.2: Eddy current separator .........................................................................................43
5.7.2.3: Magnetic separator ..............................................................................................44
5.7.3: Cyanide absorption chamber ......................................................................................44
5.7.4: Cyanide Treatment: ozone oxidation ......................................................................... 45
5.7.4.1: Advantages of Ozone Oxidation on cyanide treating ............................................. 46
5.8: Process innovation ........................................................................................................ 46
5.9: Process control .............................................................................................................. 46
5.9.1: Process instrumentation and control .......................................................................... 46
5.9.2: Control system characteristics ...................................................................................46
5.9.2.1: Mode of control algorithm...................................................................................47
5.9.3: Alarms, safety trips and interlocks ............................................................................. 47
5.9.4: Process control of the leach reactor ........................................................................... 47
5.9.4.1: Temperature control system ................................................................................48
5.9.4.2: PH control systems ..............................................................................................48
CHAPTER 6: ECONOMIC ANALYSIS ................................................................................50



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6.1 Introduction ....................................................................................................................50
6.2: Sales calculations .......................................................................................................... 52
6.3: Total cost ....................................................................................................................... 52
6.4: Profitability evaluation .................................................................................................. 54
6.5: Break even analysis ....................................................................................................... 54
CHAPTER 7: CONCLUSION AND RECOMMENDATIONS .............................................56
7.1: Conclusion.....................................................................................................................56
7.2: Recommendations ......................................................................................................... 56
7.3: References .....................................................................................................................57











































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LIST OF TABLES


Table 1 : List of substances contained in electronic waste ......................................................11
Table 2: Methods of metal reclamation, hazards, energy, and environment impact ............... 14
Table 3: Leaching agents used in processing ........................................................................... 19
Table 4: Dissolution 1 results .................................................................................................. 33
Table 5: Dissolution 2 results .................................................................................................. 34
Table 6: Calculations of power consumption in experiment 2 ................................................36
Table 7: Leaching solution preparation and reagents consumption ......................................... 37
Table 8: Amount of gold recovered from precipitation at pH 11.8 ......................................... 38
Table 9: Amount of gold after precipitation at pH 12.4 ..........................................................38
Table 10: Amount of gold recovered by precipitation .............................................................38
Table 11: Amount of gold left in solution after precipitation ..................................................39
Table 12: Gold precipitated recovered by smelting using borax flux ...................................... 39
Table 13: Comparison of different lixiviants ........................................................................... 40
Table 14: Scaling up of mass balance ......................................................................................46
Table 15: Power consumption ................................................................................................. 47
Table 16: Direct costs for the recycling process ...................................................................... 57
Table 17: Indirect costs ............................................................................................................ 58
Table 18: Summary of equipment costs...................................................................................58
Table 19: Metal prices .............................................................................................................59
Table 20: Direct manufacturing costs ......................................................................................59
Table 21: Fixed manufacturing costs .......................................................................................60
Table 22: Total Manufacturing costs .......................................................................................60






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LIST OF FIGURES


Figure 1: Potential /pH for gold- water system ........................................................................ 19
Figure 2: Effect of KCN concentration on rate of dissolution .................................................20
Figure 3: Effects of sodium thiosulphate concentration on extraction of gold ........................23
Figure 4: Percentage leached by an agent at different temperatures ....................................... 24
Figure 5. Percentage leaching yield using HNO3 ..................................................................................................... 25
Figure 6: Percentage Leached using H2SO4 ................................................................................................................. 25
Figure 7: Old computers at HIT ...............................................................................................26
Figure 8: Dysfunctional phones ...............................................................................................26
Figure 9: Mass of NaCN consumed with time......................................................................... 37
Figure 10: Amount of gold leached by different leaching agents ............................................ 41
Figure 11: Amount of gold precipitated with different precipitating agents ...........................42
Figure 12: Block flow diagram ................................................................................................43
Figure 13: Mass balance chart ................................................................................................. 44
Figure 14: Process flow chart of the whole process ................................................................48
Figure 15: Electrostatic separator ............................................................................................50
Figure 16:Eddy current separator.............................................................................................50
Figure 17: Magnetic separator .................................................................................................51
Figure 18: Break even chart ..................................................................................................... 62












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CHAPTER 1: INTRODUCTION
In recent years, a dramatic increase in the production and consumption of electrical and
electronic equipment (EEEs) with a sharp decrease in their lifespan has led to the generation
of large quantities of waste. E-waste as this waste is popularly known, is the waste near or at
the end of their useful life period and are of no further use. These include computers, cell
phones, TVs, radios, printers and calculators. WEEE is the fastest growing waste stream in the
world with a 3-5% increasing rate per year than generation of municipal wastes. E-waste
contains several different substances and chemicals, many of which are toxic and are not
biodegradable and are likely to create adverse impact on environment and health, if not handled
properly. The random disposal and improper dismantling practices produce various toxic and
carcinogenic substances which are harmful to the environment and human health. Heart
failures, cancer, inflammation and oxidative stress and kidney failures are diseases caused by
randomly disposing e-waste. Due to organic and inorganic hazardous materials present in e-
waste, a proper management method is required. Since e-waste contains appreciable amounts
of precious (Au, Ag, Pd etc.) and base (Cu, Pb, etc.) metals, it is potentially an important
secondary sources of these metals (Hagelken, 2006; Yazici et al., 2011).

1.1: Background
The growing quantity of e-waste from electronic industry is beginning to reach disastrous
proportions. It is estimated that the world generates 20-50 million tonnes annually (Herat
2013). The United States of America is the largest producer of e-waste producing three million
tonnes annually. In South Africa and China for example, it is predicted that by 2020 e-waste
from old computers will have jumped by 200 to 400 percent from 2007 levels, and by 500% in
India(Science News 2010). Internationally, various legal frameworks have been enacted and
enforced to regulate E-waste.
Zimbabwe is also not exempted from the problem of e-waste as it is also facing a rising tide of
e-waste generated by domestic consumption of new and used electrical and electronic
equipment (Newsday 20-08-12). The rate at which cheap electronic gadgets for retail are
flooding the local market could be viewed by some as development but it is also contributing
to the increase of e-waste as these gadgets have a short life span. However, there is no
environmentally friendly method to dispose e-waste and the government has been urging



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institutions and industries not to dispose of dysfunctional electronic gadgets. This means
sources of raw materials are attainable and readily available. Local electricians can also be a
good source of the raw materials.

Zimbabwean laws to consider for legal operation of this project:
Waste Management Enterprises (section 14 to 21-regulations) which require all persons
operating waste collection enterprises or waste management to be licensed,
Rural and urban councils act
Mines and minerals act
Need to comply with rules and regulations of EMA.

1.2: Problem statement
Electronic waste deposition and incineration, without recycling the non-renewable resources
present in it, is an energy inefficient and environmentally unfriendly process of e-waste
disposal. There is therefore need for a recycling (metal recovery) process that is both
economically active and environmentally friendly. The feasibility study for such a process is
to be carried out.

1.3: Significance of the study
E-waste is extremely important in diverting solid waste and supporting zero landfill initiatives.
It helps prevent and eliminate toxic scrap. The environmental impact of metal production is
quite significant especially for precious and special metals. To produce one ton of gold, 10000
tons of carbon dioxide is generated. If recycling processes are used to recover metals from e-
waste, only a fraction of carbon dioxide emissions will occur apart from other benefits already
previously stated. Processing of e-waste is most justified not only because of the impact they
can have on environment in case of un-controlled handling, but is also connected with profits
resulting from the possibility of recovery of valuable components. Undoubtedly, the
quantitative composition of electronic waste equipment makes this type of waste material
attractive in terms of possibility of metal recovery. Particularly rich in these ingredients are
printed circuit boards (PCBs), which are part of electronic devices, among which copper is the
dominant component.




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Currently in Zimbabwe end of life electronic products are discarded in landfills, burnt in open
air or collected by electronic repairers. By implementing the 3 Rs Reduce, Recycle, Reuse
and the green technology, the problem of e-waste can be reduced, thus e-waste can be utilised
as raw materials for secondary source of precious and base metals.

1.4: Justification
Economic - e-waste recycling enables recovering of renewable resources which serve
as a secondary source of metals.
Socio-economic - recycling of e-waste is a social benefit as it creates employment for
the recycling industry.
Environmental - This project recovers metals in an environmental friendly way and
also reduces the land degradation as compared to the present practice.

1.5: Hypothesis of study
Ho: If a cost-effective, high efficient, safe and eco-friendly recycling process is attained, the
process is feasible.
H1: If a low-effective, less efficient and high hazardous process is attained, the process is a
total failure.

1.6: Aim
To determine the economic and environmental feasibility of recovering metals from e-waste.

1.7: Objectives
To recover metals through a profitable and highly efficient process
To conserve the limited non-renewable resources through recycling and reducing
overall land digging as the only source to get the metals.
To reduce burning of e-waste in open environment or uncontrolled burning










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CHAPTER 2: LITERATURE REVIEW
2.1: Introduction
E-waste statistics
Compared to the other components which make up electrical gadgets, printed circuit popularly
known as PCBs contain relatively high amounts of precious metals. Youssef (2012) projects
that PCBs of computers and mobile phones are rich in precious metal content and are the most
abundant since they are the backbone of most electronics. The values of metal compositions of
PCBs from different sources like televisions, personal computers, DVD players, calculators
and others were obtained and analyzed to conclude that PCBs from personal computers and
mobile phones contain the highest amounts of valuable metals (Youssef 2012). Table 1 below
shows substances contained in various components of electronic waste.

Table 1: List of substances contained in electronic waste

Metal
by %
Key
Boards
Personal
computers
Printed circuit
board
Car
electronics
Typical
copper
ore
Recycling
efficient
%
Ag 0.05 0,009 0,3 0,12 0,00034 80
Au 0.005 0.001 0.008 0.007 0,00001 99
Cu 13 7 25 20 0,8 90
Zn 3 1.2 1.5 1 0.12 60
Pd O,0002 0.0004 - - 0,04 60
Al 18 11 3 - - 80
Ni 0,16 0.2 0.5 0.3 - 0
Pb 0.3 1.5 - 1 - 5
Bi <0,000
3
<0.0004 0.17 0.01 - 6
Fe 3 <0.1 5 5 - 80
Sb 0.3 0.5 0.06 0.08 - 70
(Proceedings of the International Conference on Sustainable Solid Waste Management, 5 - 7
September 2007, Chennai, India. pp.155-162)
Currently, half million tonnes of e-waste is discarded each year in India.

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Recognizing the opportunity to turn an environmental disaster into a business plan in 2007,
Gupta and his brother launched Attero (a Latin name for waste). Today, Attero is the
leading e-waste recycler in India, according to Gupta, handling almost 500 tons of e-waste
every month. The company's success is based on its widespread collection system, now
operating in 22 states across the country, and its innovative, four-stage recycling technology,
which recovers valuable metals - rare earths, precious metals and base metals-without fouling
the local environment. Its process is also cheaper than existing methods, says Gupta, so it can
operate profitably in areas with limited amounts of recyclable material to feed the process.
Tanzania has no specific policy on e-waste management but a number of policies which aim at
protecting the environment and human health are in place. Among the existing policies relevant
to e-waste management are the National Environment Policy (1997); Sustainable Industrial
Development Policy (SIDP) 1996 - 2020; National Water Policy (2002); National Energy
Policy (2003); National Trade Policy (2003); Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs)
Development Policy (2003); the National Health Policy (2003); Science and Technology
Policy (1996); and the National Information and Communications Technologies (ICT) Policy
2003.
Hischier et al (2011 ), in their publication entitled Does WEEE recycling make sense from an
environmental perspective? established that throughout the complete recycling chain the
sorting and dismantling activities of companies are of minor interest; instead the main impact
occurs during the treatment applied further downstream to turn the waste into secondary raw
materials. The conclusion was reached by examining two Swiss take-back and recycling
systems of SWICO (for computers, consumer electronics and telecommunication equipment)
and S.EN.S (household appliances). The two systems, which are based on an advanced
recycling fee, are well established within Switzerland. With a combined approach of material
flow analysis and life cycle assessment, the environmental impacts of these two systems have
been estimated, including all further treatment steps, which transform the fractions either into
secondary materials or into waste for final disposal. As a baseline, they used a scenario
assuming that no e-waste is recycled and hence only primary production for the similar amount
of raw materials. When comparing the environmental impact of e-waste recycling with that



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derived from the baseline scenario (incineration of all e-waste and primary production of the
raw materials), recycling proves to be clearly advantageous from an environmental perspective.

2.2: Health effects of electronic waste
Arsenic may disrupt cell communication and interfere with the triggers that cause cells to grow,
possibly contributing to cardiovascular disease, cancer and diabetes if someone is exposed in
chronic, low doses. Cadmium affects your body's ability to metabolize calcium, leading to bone
pain and severely weakened, fragile bones. Chromium can cause skin irritation and rashes. It
is also potentially carcinogenic. Copper can irritate the throat and lungs and affect the liver,
kidneys and other body systems. Lead poisoning can cause a whole slew of health problems
including the impairment of cognitive and verbal activity. Eventually, lead exposure can cause
paralysis, coma and death. Nickel is carcinogenic in large doses. Silver probably won't hurt
you, but handle it too frequently and you might come down with a case of argyria -- a condition
that permanently stains your skin a blue-grey shade. (UNEP, Recycling- From E-Waste to
Resource accessed at www.unep.org, on 24 Jan 2014).

2.3: Current processes
It is mainly the developed countries and a few other developing countries like South Africa and
Tanzania which are recovering metals from PCBs. The processes in Table 2 below are the ones
which are currently being used.


























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Table 2: Methods of metal reclamation, hazards, energy, and environment impact

Process Energy reuse Metal reclamation Environmental impact
Shredding
Low; non-metals are
landfilled
High; metals sent to
smelter
High
Municipal
incineration
High, as this process
aims to maximize this
None, unaddressed
All toxins either
released
through smoke or slag
Pyro metallurgical
recovery
Low, non-metals not
included in scope
High
Large energy
Requirements
Thermal
depolymerisation
High, waste
transformed into
useable materials

None, unaddressed
Low, efficient process,
organic toxins
decomposed

Plasma arc
gasification
High, waste
transformed into
useable materials and
power


None, unaddressed

Low, efficient process,
toxins decomposed

Bioleaching
Low, non-metals are
landfilled
High, many metals
have 90% recovery
rates

Very low energy process

The separation of metals from non-metals provide the appropriate further conditions for further
processing which involve the use of chemical reagents and solvents. There are different
possible approaches to separate metals from non-metals in PCBs which mainly involve
incineration, acid washing or physical separation. In order to recover valuable materials and to
minimize the adverse effects of hazardous materials contained in PCB, technologies such as
copper-smelting method (Andrea et al 2012).





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Incineration- is a treatment process that involves the combustion of organic substances
contained in waste materials. It can be used to burn off the non-metallic parts of PCB and retain
the metals from the ashes. However, waste incineration causes release of hazardous gases such
as dioxins and furans which can cause severe harm to the environment.
Acid washing/bathing- can be also used to react with the non-metallic parts of PCB and recover
the metals either from the rich solvent or as precipitates. However, the process of acid washing
is very difficult to control especially when including the non-metallic parts of PCBs as it causes
release of hazardous vapors and fumes.
Physical separation techniques- can also be used to separate the metals and non-metals from
PCBs. Such techniques are known to have safe and eco-friendly operation. Although they are
energy intensive, physical separation technologies are able to produce separate streams of
metals and non-metals. Such separation paves the way either for more profit from sales of waste
plastics and ceramic, or for more future development in the area of recycling of plastics.

2.4: Separation of the individual valuable metals
This is the stage where all the metals of interest are separated from the mixture and extracted
as pure metals which can be sold.
The metals selected for recovery in this study are gold, silver and copper. Therefore, a process
is needed which can selectively and quantitatively separate each of these metals from the
mixture, taking into consideration all other possibly present metal.

2.5: Pyrometallurgical processes
Pyrometallurgical processes include incineration, smelting in a plasma arc furnace or blast
furnace, drossing, sintering, melting and reactions in a gas phase at high temperatures.
Incineration is a common way of getting rid of plastic material and other organics to
further concentrate the metals . The crushed scrap can be burned in a furnace or in a molten
bath to remove plastics, leaving a molten metallic residue. The plastic burns and the refractory
oxides form a slag phase. In smelting reactions a collector metal such as copper or lead can be
used. But also impure alloys can be made by smelting the crude metal concentrates. Silver and
gold containing scrap materials can be treated in a copper smelter, but silver as well as other
noble metals are tied up in a process for a long period. The majority of secondary



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copper and a main part of the electronic scrap is processed pyrometallurgically in a
copper smelter, which include steps as reduction and smelting of the material, blister or
raw copper production in the converter, fire fining, electrolytic refining and processing of
the anode mud. In a modern secondary copper smelter, many different kinds of copper
containing materials are recycled. The materials(e.g. electronic scrap) are fed into the
process in different steps depending on their purity and physical state. The anode
composition and the quality of the dust and slag fluctuate significantly due to the
heterogeneity of the input materials.

Advantages
Proven technology
Disadvantages
It is capital and high energy intensive
It produces toxins
Requires high values of residual metals
Complex
It needs special materials to handle highly corrosive agents such as aqua regia.

2.6: Bio leaching (use of bacteria and fungi to extract metals from e-waste)
Microbiological processes can be applied to mobilize metals from electronic waste materials.
Bacteria (Thiobacillus thiooxidans, T ferrooxidans) and fungi (Aspergillus niger, Penicillium
simplicissimum) can be grown in the presence of electronic scrap. The formation of inorganic
and organic acids caused the mobilization of metals. Initial experiments showed that microbial
growth was inhibited when the concentration of scrap in the medium exceeded 10 g per L
.However, after a prolonged adaptation time, fungi as well as bacteria grew also at
concentrations of 100 g per L . Both fungal strains can mobilize Cu and Sn by 65%, and Al,
Ni, Pb, and Zn by more than 95%. At scrap concentrations of 5-10 g per L Thiobacilli is able
to leach more than 90% of the available Cu, Zn, Ni, and Al. Pb precipitated as PbSO4 while
Sn4 precipitated probably as SnO. For a more efficient metal mobilization, a two-step leaching
process is proposed where biomass growth is separated from metal leaching. Microbiological
leaching uses a natural ability of microorganisms to transform metals present in the waste in a
solid form (in the solid matrix) to a dissolved form. Apart from the possibility of bioleaching


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of metals in alkaline environment (involving cyanegenic bacteria), acidophilus microorganisms
and conducting biological process of leaching in an acidic environment play a crucial role in
the bio-metallurgical techniques. Bio-metallurgical processing of solid waste is similar to
natural biogeo-chemical metal cycles and reduces the demand of resources, such as ores,
energy and landfill space.

Advantages

is cheaper and easier to conduct in comparison to conventional techniques
is flexible - microorganisms easily adapt to changing and extreme living conditions is
environmentally friendly
It is considered a green technology (generates less amount of waste)
This is why more and more scientists become interested in bio metallurgy, technology which
can provide an attractive alternative to currently used physical and chemical methods to recover
valuable metals from waste.

Disadvantages
The speed at which the bacteria can dissolve metal is a significantly slow process
It requires the material being leached to be extremely small i.e. <0,5mm

2.7: Hydrometallurgical separation
In hydrometallurgical treatment the main steps are acid or caustic leaching of solid material.
This process normally requires a small grain size to increase the metal yield. From the solutions
the metals of interest are then isolated and concentrated via processes as solvent extraction,
precipitation, cementation, ion exchange, filtration and distillation. Leaching solvents are
mainly H2SO4 and H2O2, HNO3, NaOH, HCl etc. Hydrometallurgical processes provide high
selectivity, high purity output, controlled environment, and good recovery. Hydrometallurgical
approaches depend on selective and non-selective dissolution to achieve a complete
solubilisation of all the contained metallic fractions within e-scrape waste.

Advantages
Potential low energy input
Simple proven technology



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Provides high selectivity,
High purity output,
Controlled environment, and good recovery
Disadvantages
Non selective - low value metals such as iron are dissolved
Problems recovering the valuable metals from dissolved iron
Highly corrosive solutions
High use of water and/or chemicals with downstream treatment considerations

2.8: Leaching agents
The choice of leaching agents depends on:

2.8.1: Economics
Capital investment
Extraction economics
Availability
Cost considering detoxify/recycling

2.8.2: Process applicability
Limitations (e.g. ore type, selectivity, control, separation)
Recyclability
Detoxificability
Large scale applications (proven technology)

2.8.3: Toxicity
Emissions
Handling
Environmental toxicity

2.9: Thermodynamic aspect of leaching
Copper, Gold and silver are very noble and the potentials are Au + 3e
-
= Au
3+ ;
Cu + 2e = Cu
2+
and Ag + e
-
= Ag
+
. The equilibrium of gold is more positive even than that of oxygen
reduction reaction as shown in Fig.1. Thus it can be seen that gold is highly stable in aqueous
solution and indicates that it cannot dissolve in non-complexing solutions in the presence of


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oxygen. Also silver and copper are highly non-reactive with air. This is indeed the case in
practice, the metals being unaffected by weak acids and the other metals above hydrogen in the
series being easily leached (potassium, zinc calcium).
This suggests that the leaching of the metals may prove difficult difficult as we go down the
reactive series. However, the presence of complexing agents can considerably modify
potential/pH diagrams for metal-water systems due to the formation of highly stable metal
complex ions. Table 3 shows possible leaching agents for the processing and the active
substrates.







Figure 1: Potential /pH for gold- water system
Table 3: Leaching agents used in processing

Metal Leaching Agent
Base Metals Nitric Acid
Gold and Silver Cyanide or Thiosulphate
Copper Sulphuric Acid or Aqua Regia
Palladium Hydrochloric and Sodium Chlorate








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2.10: Chemistry of cyanidation
It is one of the earliest devised leaching processes in which oxygen participates via the
atmosphere involves the dissolution of alkaline cyanide solutions, the overall reaction of which
may be represented as:

4Au + 8CN
-
+ O2 + 2H2O 4Au (CN)
-
2 + 4OH
-
2 CuSO4 + 4 NaCN 2 CuCN + (CN)2 + 2 Na2SO4
2Ag + 4CN
-
+O2 + H2O = 2Ag(CN)2
-
+ 2OH
-
+H2O
A high pH (usually 10.5-11 range) is necessary to ensure that most of the cyanide is in the ionic
form. A high pH is also necessary for safety and economic reasons as HCN is a volatile and
poisonous gas.

2.11: Effect of cyanide concentration
The rate of dissolution increases linearly with increasing cyanide concentration until a
maximum is reached, beyond which a further increase in cyanide does not increase the amount
of metal dissolved, but on contrary has a slight retarding effect as shown in Fig 2 below.


















0 0.2 0.4 0.6 0.8 1

KCN Concentration


Figure 2: Effect of KCN concentration on rate of dissolution





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The decrease in the rate at high cyanide concentration is due to the increase in pH of the
solution. Cyanide ion undergoes hydrolysis according to the reaction:

CN
-
+ H2O
HCN + OH
-

This reaction is undesirable since there is production of HCN fumes which are toxic.

2.12: Effect of hydrogen ion concentration
It is essential that cyanide solution is kept alkaline during leaching of gold because of the
following reasons:

Prevent hydrolysis of CN
-
ion.

CN
-
+ H2O
HCN + OH
-

Prevent cyanide decomposition by atmospheric CO2.

CN
-
+ H2CO3 HCN + HCO
-
3
Dissolution of base metals such as copper, zinc and nickel is substantially reduced and
resulting in cleaner effluents than those generally produced in acid leach systems.

2.13: Precipitation with zinc
Gold is precipitated out of the pregnant solution by means of zinc powder. The precipitate is
then filtered out of the solution, and the filtrate (which looks like grey mud at that point) is then
smelted with fluxes to recover the gold bullion.

2.14: Reaction chemistry
The anodic oxidation of zinc in aqueous solution is given by:

Zn
2+
+ 2e Zn
In cyanide solution zinc forms a stable cyanide complex:

Zn
2+
+ 4CN
-
Zn(CN)4
2-

Combining these equations gives:

Zn(CN)4
2-
+ 2e
-
Zn + 4 CN
-

2 Au(CN)2
-
+ Zn 2 Au + Zn(CN)4
2-


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2.15: Cyanide concentration
The rate of precipitation is independent of cyanide concentration above the critical minimum
value. However, the dissolution rate of zinc increases with increase in cyanide concentration
and hence it is undesirable to increase cyanide concentration significantly above the minimum
required for precipitation.

2.16: Zinc concentration
The dissolution rate of zinc decreases with increasing Zn ion concentration. High zinc
concentration can result in formation of insoluble zinc hydroxide which can passivate the zinc
surface and severely reduce precipitation rate.

2.17: Temperature
Elevated temperatures increase the rate of zinc dissolution and hydrogen evolution, with an
associated decrease in precipitation efficiency. Under these circumstances, the addition of Pb
(II) may reduce Zinc consumption and improve precipitation efficiency.

2.18: Effect of pH
The pH of the pregnant solution also influences the redox potential, which shifts in the negative
direction with increasing alkalinity. The cementation process improves when there is an
increase in pH to a value between 11.5 and 11.9. Precipitation is severely retarded below pH
8, and the, the precipitation rate has been found to drop sharply at pH values above 12 due to
excessive hydrogen evolution. Consequently industrial systems usually operate within the
range applied for cyanide leaching i.e. pH 10.5-11.5 (or approximately 0.10-0.20g/l Ca(OH)2).

2.19: Thiosulphate leaching
The leaching with thiosulphate is considered as a promising alternative to cyanide leaching.
Thiosulphate based on other experimental results is the only process which can be used directly
to leach gold from certain gold containing sulphide ores without a pretreatment step such as
roasting, high pressure oxidation or bacteria l leaching and also without the consumption of
large amounts high cost or toxic leaching agents. The gold in leach solution can be cemented
with zinc dust, sodium borohydride or with sodium sulphide.








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2.20: Effect of Na2S2O3 concentration
The effect of thiosulphate concentration on gold extraction is shown in fig 3 below. It can be
seen that the gold extraction generally increased with the increase in thiosulphate concentration
up to 1.0M, and then the extraction decreased with further increase in thiosulphate
concentration. The extent of gold extracted has shown a minimum roughly at 0.6 Na2S2O3.


100

80
60
40
20

0
-0.4 0.1 0.6 1.1 1.6
Concentration (M)


Figure 3: Effects of sodium thiosulphate concentration on extraction of gold

2.21: Precipitation

2.21.1: Sodium borohydride
Gold can be precipitated by reduction onto Zn, Al or Fe powder with sodium borohydride.

BO3
3-
+ 7H2O + 7e = BH4 + 10OH
-

Au(S2O3)2
3-
+ e = Au + 2S2O3
2

2.21.2: Precipitation with sodium sulphide
Generally, a large excess of metal powder is required to provide sufficient surface area to
reduce gold in a reasonable time. Unfortunately, copper also co-precipitates from solution and
must be recycled to leach - except when copper powder is used. Interestingly, fundamental
electrochemical studies report that Au (I) thiosulphate cannot be readily reduced to metallic
gold in the potential region where copper dissolve. However, the presence of both copper and





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silver in solution enhances gold deposition at a low over potential (i.e. gold deposits readily on
silver).

2.22: Leaching with HCL and HNO3 mixture (aqua regia)
Mixing 1 volume of concentrated nitric acid with 4 volumes of concentrated hydrochloric acid
makes aqua regia. No heat is evolved when mixing but the aqua regia at once starts to emit
chlorine gas, which evolves slowly for several days. A closed aqua-regia vessel can develop
enough chlorine pressure to burst. So the bottle needs to be stored in the open or in a fume
hood. The effect of temperature on the leaching agent is shown in fig 4, Fig 5 and Fig 6

Aqua regia attacks the metal with formation of [AuCl4]
-
complex ion.

Au + 6HNO3 Au
3+
+ 3NO3
-
+ 3H2O + 3NO2+

4Cl
-
(from conc HCl) [AuCl4]
-
Gold is first oxidized by nitric acid to Au
3+
, which is then removed by complexing with the
chloride ions.

45
40
35
30
25
25C
20
95 C
15
10
5
0
H2SO4 1M HCL 2M HNO3 2M
Figure 4: Percentage leached by an agent at different temperatures







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120


100


80


60


25C
90C
40


20


0
Cu Fe Ni Zn Pb Al Ag Sn


Figure 5. Percentage leaching yield using HNO3




70
60
50
40

30

20

10

0
Cu Fe Ni









Zn Sn Pb
25C
90C
Al Ag


Figure 6: Percentage Leached using H2SO4






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CHAPTER 3: RESEARCH METHODOLOGY

3.1: Interviews
Interviews were conducted. Areas where interviews were conducted include the HIT Electronic
Engineering department, Environment Management Agency, Zimstat offices and people
(domestic users) around Zimbabwe in relation to the research team residence

3.2: Questionnaires
These were issued out to the offices and department of the school. HIT ICTS department
managed to help with the figures of electronic gadgets which are no longer in use, from some
of their storerooms to be 793+. Figure 7 shows the state of the HIT ICTS department and Figure
8 show dysfunctional phones. Other departments could not manage to give the values since it
is confidential information and required many offices to get it.













Figure 7: Old computers at HIT













Figure 8: Dysfunctional phones



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3.3: Field work

3.3.1: E.M.A
According to EMA, the government has not granted them permission to license any probable
means of disposing waste therefore electronic waste is not allowed to be dumped legally in any
places. Because of this reason many organizations which have appealed to EMA on several
occasions to be granted such a license have been denied the license. The result is that
organizations are holding on to the large masses of dysfunctional electronic gadgets including
the Harare Institute of Technology among other universities and industries. According to EMA,
the government plans to start shipping any electronic gadget which would have become
dysfunctional to China and South Africa, which is going to be expensive for the country and
divert funds which could have been used for some other necessary or helpful development in
the country.

3.3.2: Zimstat
Zimstat books were not up to date for e-waste statistics which includes the amount of electronic
gadgets being imported, amount which is locally generated and rate of e-waste being disposed.
However from this research, statistical value was calculated using the sampling method (in
which values from dumpsites, school departments, interviews from domestic users and life
expectances of electronic gadgets were used) and statistical values of the African countries to
get an amount of 30 000 tons per annum of e-waste.

3.3.3: Mbare magaba
A visit to Mbare Magaba illegal waste dump in Harare led to a discovery of a range of e-waste
containing material disposed without any effort of metal recovery. It is evident that the waste
is from adjacent households as it contains broken TV, radios, DVDs etc.

3.3.4: Research based on peoples activities to electronic gadgets domestic users:
The research team conducted a survey on 140 households across Zimbabwe using random
sampling. The study focused on the buying and disposal pattern of the electronic products and
to assess the e-waste awareness among domestic users. The survey threw light on the following
aspects:

Product usage



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Purchase and disposal behavior
Awareness about e-waste, its hazards nature and recycling methods
E-waste collection systems and convenience.

3.4: Results
The survey reflected the following:


1.


2.

Awareness of the toxic substances present in the e- waste

Knowledge of the hazards to human health and the environment

3.5: Materials and experimental procedure

3.5.1: Dissolution 1 of PCBs
An experiment was done to determine the metal in PCB

Aim:

To determine metal compositions in a PCB extract.

Objectives:

Selection and preparation of e-scrap.
Dissolution of the metals present in PCB into prepared solution.
To determine the mass composition of the metals.

Determining the power consumed by equipment for the experiment.

Apparatus:
PCB containment gadgets, balance, pliers, nitric acid, magnesium nitrate, magnetic stirrers,
cloth bag, graphite rod, voltage source, stop watch, distilled water, meter and voltmeter, aqua
regia,

Method:

A mass of PCB containing gadget was weighed and cut into small pieces.
4 litters of distilled water was mixed with 400ml nitric acid (HNO3).



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300gm Sodium nitrate (Na(NO
-
3)) was added and stirred by 2 magnetic stirrers.
The PCBs were placed in a cloth bag and a graphite rode was inserted in the bag.
A current of 0-12A, voltage to 15V was passed through while a stop watch was used to
estimate time taken by the process to reach maximum current level.
The stop watch was stopped when the maximum current was achieved.
The remains in the bag were taken out, dried and weighed and the weight loss in the
scrap was calculated.
The current, voltage and time were measured so as to calculate the energy consumed
for dissolution. The experiment was repeated.

3.5.2: Recovery of gold using cyanide leaching and precipitation
Aim;
To recover the metals from solution through cyanide leaching and precipitation:

Apparatus:
250 ml flask, balance, universal indicator, filter paper, stop watch, lime, sodium cyanide(
NaCN), sodium nitrate (NaNO3 ), silver nitrate ( AgNO3 ), oxalic acid, hydrochloric acid

Method: Leaching
A sample of 100 ml of the 99g remaining solution of PCBs was put in a 250ml flask.
The sample was pulped.0.5g of lime was added to achieve a pulp pH of 10.5, followed
by 1.54g of sodium cyanide.
Mechanical agitation was carried out for 24hours, with regular withdrawal of solution
samples to monitor the dissolution rate and reagent consumption, being replenished to
maintain target levels.
At the end of the leach period, the pulp was filtered and the solution was taken for
precipitation.
The amount of sodium cyanide added = 0.1/100 2000 0.77
= 1.54g (0.77 is the conversion factor)

The % CaO in solution was determined by titration with oxalic acid.


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Method: Precipitation


100 ml of the pregnant leach solution at pH of 11.9 was placed in a beaker. The
free oxygen in the leach liquor was removed by heating the solution for an hour
without boiling it.
10g zinc powder was added to the leach liquor in order to allow all the gold
to precipitate out of solution.
The mixture was left for 3 hours in order to precipitate the maximum amount of
gold from the pregnant leach solution.
The precipitation efficiency was improved by addition of a few drops of sodium
(II) ions in the form of sodium nitrate.
The precipitate was filtered out of solution (which looks like grey mud).
The precipitate was washed by a weak hydrochloric solution to remove residual
zinc. The ratio of HCl to H2O was 1:10.

3.5.3: Recovery of metals using aqua regia
Aim:

To recover the metals from solution through leaching and precipitation with aqua regia:

Apparatus:
Nitric acid, hydrochloric acid, beaker, fume hood, plate stove, clock, filter paper, measuring
cylinder,
Method: Leaching
100ml volume of 1M nitric acid was mixed with 300ml of HCl in a beaker under a
fume hood.
The mixture was boiled until the colorless liquid had changed color to lime.
The hot liquid was then added to 100ml and mixture was then boiled until it turned to
a thick paste.
100ml HCl diluted 1:1 with water was added to the paste and boiled again for
30minutes.


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The solution was allowed to stand for 2 hours and then filtered and leach pregnant
solution was then taken for precipitation.

Method: Precipitation

Sodium metabisulphite:
100ml of Sodium metabisulphite solution was diluted with 20ml of distilled water in
order to remove the excess HNO3, and boiled for 20minutes.
An excess amount of 15g sodium metabisulphite was added to the solution while
stirring until dissolution of the precipitant had stopped.
More sodium metabisulphite was added and a white cloud produced; which was an
indication of more gold precipitating.
The mixture was left to cool and mixed in order to precipitate all the gold out of
solution.
The solution was decanted and the residue which looks like black mud was smelted
with borax flux at 1200C in a furnace.

Ferrous sulphate:
10g of ferrous sulphate powder was added to 100 ml of the leach pregnant solution.
2ml oxalic acid was added to the solution to enhance the precipitation process.
A precipitate was formed and more ferrous sulphate was added until sulphur dioxide
(SO2) odour was produced which was an indication that precipitation was complete.
The solution was allowed to stand overnight so all the gold can be settled at the bottom.
The upper precipitant was then filtered and melted with flux.
















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CHAPTER 4: EXPERIMENTAL RESULTS AND ANALYSES

4.1: Survey results
A social survey was conducted with regards to waste dumping. Various approaches in
collection were proposed by the communities and were put into regard. Three feasible
alternatives were listed for the people to dump their waste:
Door-to-door type of collection system, where a mobile vehicle would collect the e-
waste right from the doorstep;
Stationary collection points and the people bring their wastes to the points. The
stationary system was of three types: Temporary collection center, Permanent
collection center, non- profit collection center;
Mobile collection system, where in a vehicle would come to the central part of an area
on certain days and people have to take their e-waste to that point to dispose. These
vehicles would operate either in milk runs or in specific location coverage;































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4.2: Results for dissolution 1 of PCBs
Weight of PCB before Dissolution=160g
Table 4 below shows results from the dissolution experiment.
Table 4: Dissolution 1 results

TIME (Minutes) VOLTAGE (Volts) CURRENT (amp) HNO3 ADDED IN (ml)
0 9.92 7.01 25
15 9.02 9.03 -
35 7.67 8.90 -
50 9.68 9.23 -
65 7.73 9.00 50
80 7.41 8.98 50
95 7.02 7.97 50
105 6.78 7.99 100
125 6.51 7.99 100
145 6.33 7.96 100
175 6.07 7.96 100
220 5.80 7.93 200
270 5.38 7.92 200
295 5.34 7.85 -


Weight of PCB after Dissolution = 102g

pH = 1


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4.3: Results for dissolution 2 of PCBs
Weight of PCB before Dissolution=160g

The table below shows results from the second experiment.

Table 5: Dissolution 2 results

TIME (minutes) VOLTAGE (Volts) CURRENT (amp) HNO3 ADDED IN (ml)
0 9.60 9.98 -
15 9.54 9.90 100
40 8.93 9.86 100
55 8.97 9.86 50
75 8.55 9.85 50
120 7.92 9.83 100
135 8.04 9.82 50
150 7.90 9.82 50
165 7.90 9.80 50
180 7.83 9.80 50
195 7.68 9.79 50
210 7.79 9.80 50
225 7.57 9.80 -


Weight of PCB after Dissolution =96g

pH = 3

Reactions which took place




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HNO3 H
+
+ NO3
-
.. (1).

NaNO3
Na
+
+ NO3
-
.. (2).

Na
+
+ H2O NaOH + H2
.. (3).

H2O H+ + OH
-
.. (4).

H2O + 2OH
-
O2 + H
+
... (5).

For Copper:

Cu + NO3
-
Cu (NO3)2 (goes in solution) + 2e
-
.. (6)

4.4: Calculations
For experiment 1

average voltage =total voltage(vt) number of time recoded

Vt = (9.92+9.02+7.67+9.68+7.73+7.41+7.02+6.78+6.51+6.33+6.07+5.80+5.38+5.34) V

=100.66 volts

Number of times = 14

Average voltage = 100.66 14 = 7.19 V

Average current = total current (at) number of time recorded
AT = (7.01+9.03+ 8.90 +9.23+ 9.00+8.98+7.97+7.99+7.99+7.96+7.96+7.93+7.92+7.85)
= 115.72

Average current (Aav) = 115.721= 8.27 A

Power calculations
POWER = VT AT
For experiment 1

8.27 7.19 = 59.4613 W



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Power in kWhr = (59.4613/1000)*295/60 = 0.292kwhr

For experiment 2

Vav = (9.6+9.54+8.93+8.97+8.55+7.92+8.04+7.9+7.9+7.83+7.68+7.79+7.57)/13 = 8.325V

Av Current = (9.98+9.9+9.86+9.86+9.85+9.83+9.82+9.82+9.80+9.80+9.79+9.8+9.8)/13
= 9.839 A

Power (Kwhr) = av current * Vav * time

=9.839*8.325*225/(60*1000) kwhr =0.307 kwhr

Average power for the 2 experiments = 0.2995kwhr

Table 6: Calculations of power consumption in dissolution experiment 2

Exp
number
Initial mass of
scrap (g)
Vaverage(Volts) Aaverage(Amp) Time(min) Power(kwhr)
1 160 7.19 8.27 295 0.292
2 158 8.325 9.839 225 0.307
% of metal content is. P= (mass before electrolysis - mass after electrolysis)/ mass before
electrolysis * 100

For experiment 1: % = (160-102)/99 *100 = 38.12%

For experiment 2: %= (158-94)/94 *100 = 39.24%

Average composition for the experiments = (38.12+39.24)/2 = 37.75%


















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a
s
s

o
f

N
a
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4.5: Results for cyanide leaching and precipitation
Table 7: Leaching solution preparation and reagents consumption

Time % KCN NaCN Added (g)
11:00 - 1.54
12:00 0.05 1.23
13:00 0.08 1.39
14:00 0.09 0.77
08:30 0.04 1.39
09:30 0.08 1.08
10:30 0.09 0.62
11:00 0.10 Finished








2



1.5



1



0.5



0
1 2 3 4 22 23 24
Time (Hrs)



Figure 9: Mass of NaCN consumed with time







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4.6: Precipitation
Table 8: Amount of gold recovered from precipitation at pH 11.8

Precipitant before precipitation (gm) after precipitation (gm) % gold extracted
Zinc 0.198 0.002 98.99
Aluminum 0.198 0,096 51.51


The amount of gold precipitated by zinc powder = (0.198-0.002)/0.198)100%

= 98.99%

The amount of gold precipitated by aluminium powder = (0.198-0.096)/19.8)100%

= 51.51%

Table 9: Amount of gold after precipitation at pH 12.4

Precipitant before precipitation (gm) after precipitation (gm) % gold extracted
Zinc 0.198 0.002 98.99
Aluminum 0.198 0.027 86.36
4.7: Experiment 4: Aqua regia leaching and precipitation
Table 10: Amount of gold recovered by precipitation

Precipitant gold in leach liquor
before precipitation (gm)
gold in barren solution
after precipitation (gm)
% gold extracted
Na2S2O5
0,161 0.028 82.61
Ferrous sulphate 0.161 0.097 39.75
Amount of gold precipitated by Na2S2O5 = (0.133/0.161)100%

= 82.61%

Amount of gold precipitated by ferrous sulphate = (0,064/0.161)100%

= 39.75%






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Table 11: Amount of gold left in solution after precipitation

Precipitant Before precipitation (gm) after precipitation gm) %Gold extracted
NaBH4 on Zn 0.160 0.013 91.88
NaBH4 on Al 0.160 0.060 62.50
Amount of gold precipitated with NaBH4 on Zn
= (0.147/0.160)100%

= 91.88%
Amount of gold precipitated with NaBH4 on Al = (0.100/0.160)100%

= 62.50%

Table 12: Gold precipitated recovered by smelting using borax flux

Leach solution Precipitating agent Pregnant leach (ml) Mass Au (mg)
Thiosulphate NaBH4 on Zn 100 0.5823
Aqua regia Na2S2O5 100 0.6021
Cyanide Zn 100 0.6001
4.8: Analysis of results
Metals occupy 37.75% of the e-scrape and the power consumed to separate them is
0.2995 Kwhr.
Using cyanide as the lixiviant dissolved very high amounts of gold into solution. The
leaching process was allowed a longer residence time of 24 hours; zinc powder proved
to be a better precipitating agent than aluminium. Zinc powder precipitated 98.99% of
the gold whereas aluminium powder precipitated 51.51% of the gold at pH 11.8.
The pH was adjusted to 12.4 by adding sodium carbonate. There was a remarkable
increase in the amount of gold precipitated by aluminium by a factor of 0.628 to
83.86%. The gold precipitated by zinc was unaffected by increasing the pH. A
hydroxide layer is formed on the surface of the aluminium which passivates the
precipitation process on lower pH.




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The zinc precipitated pregnant solution gave 0.6001g of gold. A tonne of PCBs
therefore can yield 12g of gold. Therefore total amount of gold recovered is 75% .
On thiosulphate leaching sodium borohydride (NaBH4) on zinc proved to be a better
precipitating agent than NaBH4 on aluminium. The cause for the lower recovery was
centered on passivation of aluminium on lower pH (<13) by forming a hydroxide layer.
Thiosulphate dissolved less gold than cyanide into solution. The reason for lower
recovery is lower residence times and also passivation by cupric sulphide formed by
the reaction between cupric ions and thiosulphate ions and or the oxidation of cuprous
thiosulphate complex ions. Above 100C cupric sulphide adhering to the gold surface
becomes easily removed and the dissolution of gold remarkably increases. The total
amount of gold that can be recovered by this process was found to be 72.8%.
Aqua regia proved to be a better lixiviant than thiosulphate by 0.625%. Sodium
metabisulphite (Na2S2O5) precipitated more gold from leach liquor than ferrous
sulphate. Sodium metabisulphite precipitated twice the amount of gold from solution
as compared to ferrous sulphate .Total amount of gold that can be recovered by this
process was found to be 75.3%.

Table 13: Comparison of different lixiviants

Lixiviant Gold leached (ppm)
Thiosulphate 16.0
Aqua regia 16.1
Cyanide 19.8
















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u
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FEASIBILITY STUDY OF RECOVERING PRECIOUS METALS FROM E-WASTE
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20
18
16
14
12
10
8
6
4
2
0
Thiosulphate Aqua regia cyanide

Lixiviant


Figure 10: Amount of gold leached by different leaching agents
The order of dissolution of gold from the highest to the lowest was cyanide, aqua regia, and
thiosulphate.































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%Au recovered
Cyanide Zn
cyanide(pH 11.8)
0 Al
Cyanide(pH 12.4)
0
39.75 0
82.61
Al
Thiosulphate
0 NaBH4 on Zn
Thiosulphate
62.5
98.99
NaBH4 on Al
Aqua regia
91.88
86.36
51.51 Na2S2O5













Figure 11: Amount of gold precipitated with different precipitating agents






























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CHAPTER 5: PROCESS DESIGN

5.0: Introduction
This chapter is aimed at highlighting the process designed with the aid of a process flow
diagram, material balance and energy balance, giving a full description of the process being
undertaken.

5.1: Block flow diagram







PCB feed
PCB sampling PCB dismantling



















Unrecovered
metals








zinc











Figure 12: Block flow diagram

Feromagnetic
materials





Grinding Magnetic separator






Elecrostatic Eddy curent
separator separator




Non metals Non metals



cyanide Na2S2O5



Gold leaching Silver leaching








Gold precipitation Silver precipitation




Un chloride
recovered
metals
Gold to Silver to
smelter smelter
water
Used
water
Washing and drying
Sulphiric
acid
Copper leaching
NaCl
Copper
precipitation
Copper to
smelter







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5.2: Mass balance
Material balances are the basis of process design. A material balance taken over the complete
process was used to determine the quantities of raw materials required and products produced.
Balances over individual process units set the process stream flows and compositions.
Fig 13 below shows the block flow diagram for the process with the mass balances of the
processes









PCB feed
PCB sampling
160 g 160 g










PCB dismantling Grinding
160 g


130 g


Elecrostatic
separator


70 g

Non metals



5g cyanide
83 g
To waste
t reatment
Gold leaching
Feromagnetic
materials
9 g

30 g
Magnetic separator
40
g

Eddy curent
separator
60 g
20 g
Non metals
10 g
Na2S2O5
45 g
sln
Silver leaching
water
80% wt(48.8g) 81.6%
wt(49.8)
dirty
water
Washing and drying
61 g
60 g
Sulphiric
55 g acid
Copper leaching
20g
H2SO4
25 g
2 g sln


1 g zinc
Gold precipitation
35g
sln









2.982 g
waste
20 g
40 gsln sln
sln 10g
NaCl
Copper
precipitation
Silver precipitation
2 g
chloride

Copper to
0.0108 g Gold to
smelter 7 g Silver to
15 g
smelter
smelter

Figure 13: Mass balance chart
5.3: General mass balance equation
The general conservation equation for the process system can be written as :

INPUT + GENERATION - OUTPUT - CONSUMPTION = ACCUMULATION




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Under steady state conditions

MASS INPUT = MASS OUTPUT.

5.4: Overall mass balance
This is a material balance calculated over the whole process. In calculating the overall material
balance equation Calculating overall material balance for the entire process can be ambiguous
therefore system boundaries are going to be applied and firstly the material balance on unit
operation are going to be carried out then it is integrated to the overall into the overall material
balance.
1. Balance at electronic separator
BASIS = 160 g

OVERALL BALANCE: INPUT = OUTPUT





INPUT





2. Separation unit:
160 g metals& non metals





PROCESS
OUTPUT













SEPERATION
61g metals





99g Non metals

3. Washing and drying: solution output = 61g +0.8(61g) - 49.8 = 60g washed metals




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4. Copper precipitation: output = 25g +10 - 25g =15 g copper

5. Silver precipitation: output = 40g +2g- 35g = 7g silver

7. Gold precipitator Output = 2g +1g- 2.982 =0.0108g gold
In order to match an annual feed of 20 000 tones, the laboratory experiment have a scaling
factor of 125exp
6
.

SCALING FACTOR = 20000 000kg/ 0.16kg = 125exp
6

The results for the mass balances are shown in Table 14 below for an annual production.

Table 14: Scaling up of mass balance

Input / year in tonnes Output /year in tonnes
E-WASTE 20000 COPPER 1875
H2SO4
2500 GOLD 1.35
NA2S3O2
1250 SILVER 875
CYANIDE 625
NaCl 1250
Zinc 125
Chloride 250


5.5: Energy Balance
According to the first law of thermodynamics the conservation of energy is described by the
equation:
Energy out = Energy in + Generation - Consumption - Accumulation
For the electrical equipment, power was calculated from the relationship between the voltage
across the equipment and electrical current through them. The calculated power consumed is
tabulated in Table 15 below

Energy = voltage * current * time taken for the process




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Table 15: Power consumption

EQUIPMENT POWER KWh
Shredder 125000
Crusher 1 65000
Crusher 2 10220
Electrostatic separator 2000
Magnetic separator 202
Concentrator 400
Total 202822


Scaling up the power used for experiment

0.292 * 125 000 = 36500
The recovering of metals from e-waste has its own energy balance and so is the leaching,
precipitation and the generation process. Following the conservation of energy the following
equation applies

5.5.1: Overall balance for process (open system)
Based on the Principle of Conservation of Energy and taking a basis of calculation of 1 hour,

H + K + P = Q + W

ASSUMPTIONS
At steady state (K=0), no change in elevation(P=0)
Total energy input=202822kWh + Q = Htot
Enthalpy change of reaction = enthalpy change of formation ofproducts - enthalpy change of
formation of reactants

Htot (reaction) = Hf(Cu) + Hf(Pb)+Hf(Ag)+Hf(Au)-( Hf(Cu(NO3)2) +
Hf(Pb(NO3)2) + Hf(Ag(NO3)) + f(Au(OH)3))





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=-(-73.1kcal/kmol / Mr(Cu(NO3)2)-106.88kcal/kmol /Mr(Pb(NO3)2) -29.4kcal/kmol /
Mr(Ag(NO3)) -100.6kcal/kmol /Mr(Au(OH)3))

=1219.45 kcal/kg
=3.148kJ/kcal x 1219 kcal/kg
=3838.8 kJ/kg (Crushed PCBs)
5.6.: Process flow diagram
Fig 14 below shows the diagram of the process flow diagram for the whole process starting
from the crushing of a PCB to the metals recovered.

PCB feed


Shredder







Dust
<0.075mm







Magnetic separator


Hydro
Cyclone

5X5 cm



































Crusher
1-2mm






Middling


Crusher







Non metals


E lectrostatic
separator

Magnetic separator























Non metals


Mixer

Feromagnetic
metals
Ferromagnetic metal dust








2M H2SO4







Na2S2O3





Filter







Filter










Filter
Copper to smelter




Liquid with non-desired metals
Cementation filter

Silver to s smelter




Cyanide







Filter










Cyanide absorption chamber
Liquid with non-desired metals

Gold to smelter



Figure 14: Process flow chart of the whole process










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5.7: Process description

This section aims to highlight the process taking place, as designed in the process flow diagram.

5.7.1: PCB sampling and dismantling
The process involve shredding of the PCBs into 5x5 cm plates followed by crushing into an
average diameter of 1.5 mm. this is done as to increase the surface area when processes such
as leaching are carried out. Hence the process of PCB dismantling is particle size reduction.

5.7.2: Separation techniques
Three techniques for separation of PCB particles into their different components based on their
properties were employed to get a high percentage of the separation yield

5.7.2.1: Electrostatic separator
An electrostatic separator is a device for separating particles by mass in a low energy charged
beam. Generally, electrostatic charges are used to attract or repel differently charged crushed
PCB material. The same electrostatic separator can use force of attraction to sort the PCB
particles, conducting PCB particles stick to an oppositely-charged object, such as a metal drum,
thereby separating them from the particle mixture. When this type of beneficiation uses
repelling force, it is normally employed to change the trajectory of falling objects to sort them
into different places. This way, when a mixture of PCB particles falls past a repelling object,
the particles with the correct charge fall away from the other particles when they are repelled
by the similarly charged object. An electrostatic separator is shown in Fig:15.






















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(www.alibaba.com/product-detail/Ht-Roll-Electrostatic_12224081/shoimage.html )
Figure 15: Electrostatic separator
5.7.2.2: Eddy current separator
An eddy current separator (shown in Fig:16 below) uses a powerful magnetic field to separate
non-ferrous metals from waste after all ferrous metals have been removed previously by some
arrangement of magnets. The device makes use of eddy currents to effect the separation. The
eddy current separator is applied to a conveyor belt carrying a thin layer of mixed e-waste. At
the end of the conveyor belt is an eddy current rotor. Nonferrous metals are thrown forward
from the belt into a product bin, while non-metals simply fall off the belt due to gravity.Eddy
current separators may use a rotating drum with permanent magnets, or may use an
electromagnet depending on the type of separator









( www.compost.css.cornel.edu/MSWFactsheets/msw.fs1.html )

Figure 16: Eddy current separator



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5.7.2.3: Magnetic separator
Magnetic separation is a process in which magnetically susceptible material is extracted from
a mixture using a magnetic force. In this magnetic separator crushed PCB material was fed
onto a moving belt which passed underneath two pairs of electromagnets under which further
belts ran at right angles to the feed belt. The first pair of electromagnets is weakly magnetized
and serves to draw off any iron particles present. The second pair is strongly magnetized and
attracts the wolframite, which is weakly magnetic. These machines were capable of treating 10
tons of ore a day. This process of separating magnetic substances from the non-magnetic
substances in a mixture with the help of a magnet is called magnetic separation. Fig 17 below
shows a process of magnetic separation.






(www.antohendarto.blogspot.com/2012/02/magnetic-seperator.html)
Figure 17: Magnetic separator

5.7.3: Cyanide absorption chamber
Activated carbon, also called activated charcoal or activated coal, is a form of carbon processed
to be riddled with small, low-volume pores that increase the surface area available for
adsorption or chemical reactions. Due to its high degree of micro porosity, just one gram of
activated carbon has a surface area in excess of 500 m
2
, as determined by gas adsorption.
Complete cyanide removal is obtained at ambient temperatures by passing pre-aerated
solutions of cyanide at pH 8-9. The capacity and efficiency of the activated carbon is enhanced





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by adding cupric ions to the solution. This behavior is explained by the preferential adsorption
of Cu (CN) 2
-
over CN
-
on activated carbon. Activated carbon absorb up to 7.7 g CN
-
/kg.C.

5.7.4: Cyanide Treatment: ozone oxidation
Ozone oxidation of cyanide was chosen as the method for treating cyanide. Cyanide oxidation
with ozone is a two-step reaction similar to alkaline chlorination. Ozone is a strong oxidizing
agent with an electrode potential of +1.24. Cyanide is oxidized to cyanate, with ozone reduced
to oxygen per the following equation:
CN
-
+ O3 CNO
-
+ O2
Then cyanate is hydrolyzed, in the presence of excess ozone, to bicarbonate and nitrogen and
oxidized per the following reaction:
2 CNO
-
+ 3O3 + H2O 2 HCO3
-
+ N2 + 3O2
The reaction time for complete cyanide oxidation is rapid in a reactor system with 10 to 30
minute retention times being typical. The second-stage reaction is much slower than the first-
stage reaction. The reaction is typically carried out in the pH range of 10-12 where the reaction
rate is relatively constant. Temperature does not influence the reaction rate significantly. To
complete the first reaction requires 1.8 -2.0 lbs of ozone per lb of CN
-.
The metal cyanide complexes of cadmium, copper, nickel, zinc and silver are readily destroyed
with ozone. The presence of copper and nickel provide a significant catalytic effect in the stage
one reaction but can reduce the rate of the stage two reaction (oxidation of cyanate). Iron, gold
and cobalt complexes are very stable and are only partially oxidized, unless a suitable catalyst
is added. Ultraviolet light (UV oxidation), in combination with ozone, can provide complete
oxidation of these complexes.
UV oxidation, in combination with ozone, can completely oxidize all metal cyanide complexes.
UV oxidation is limited to relatively clear solutions, since waste streams are passed through a
light-transmitting chamber and exposed to intense UV light. UV in combination with ozone
results in the formation of OH radicals, which are strong oxidizing agents capable of oxidizing
iron cyanide complexes. Suitable light sources emit in the range of 200 to 280 nanometers
(nm). Ozone will absorb in this band. A major advantage UV/ozone oxidation is that no
undesirable byproducts (e.g., ammonia) are generated.





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5.7.4.1: Advantages of Ozone Oxidation on cyanide treating
Extremely effective against all free and complex cyanides either alone or in
combination with UV light
Does not form any undesirable by products such a chlorinated organics or ammonia
Does not require the purchase, storage or handling of dangerous chemicals on site
Ozone is produced on site from air using an ozone generator
The reaction with ozone does not require high temperatures or pressures

5.8: Process innovation
A process innovation is the implementation of a new or significantly improved production
or delivery method. The research managed to come with an innovation in the designing of the
process, the addition of the electrostatic separator will increase the purity levels of our
recovered metals, this is because of the significantly non-metal free PCB material that will be
produced for leaching. Another innovation is the use of activated carbon together with Ozone
in the treating of cyanide. The combined use of these two techniques will ensure that we
produce contaminant free product and also we safe guard the environment against the negative
impacts of cyanide.

5.9: Process control
This highlights the process control strategy for temperature, pH and flow which is incorporated
in the design of the equipment. Different process instrumentation has been suggested for the
equipment.

5.9.1: Process instrumentation and control
The plant uses automatic control system because manual operation would necessitate
continuous monitoring of the controlled variable by a human operator and the efficiency of
observation would inevitably fall off with time. Instruments are provided to monitor key
variables during the plant operation.
5.9.2: Control system characteristics
The controller and the final control element are pneumatically operated due to the following
reasons:





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The pneumatic controller is varying rugged and almost free of maintenance. No much
training is required as compared to electronics basically pneumatic equipment is
simple.
The pneumatic controller appears to be safer in a potentially explosive atmosphere
which is often present in acid related operations.
Transmission distances are short. Pneumatic and electronic transmission system is
generally equal up to about 250 to 300 feet. Above this distance, electronic systems
begin to offer savings.
5.9.2.1: Mode of control algorithm
PID control
Cascade control

5.9.3: Alarms, safety trips and interlocks
Alarms are to be incorporated to alert operators of serious, and potentially hazardous,
deviations in process conditions. Key instruments are fitted with switches and relays to operate
audible and visual alarms on the control panels.
Safety trip will be incorporated in all control loops involved in the process. Where it is
necessary to follow the fixed sequence of operations for example, during a plant start-up and
shut down, or in batch operations as in this case, interlocks are to be included to prevent
operators deviating from the required sequence.

5.9.4: Process control of the leach reactor
Control strategy has been developed for the following parameters:-
Temperature
pH







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5.9.4.1: Temperature control system
The reaction in the leach reactor is exothermic and temperature of 600C is required for the
effectiveness of the reaction. The temperature of the reactor can reach 950C if not controlled
and this will reduce recovery efficiency in the leach reactor, therefore the objective of the
control system is to control the reactor temperature at 600C, a 30C deviation will be tolerated.
Cascade control is going to be used; the primary controller is the reactor temperature coolant
temperature controller. It measures the reactor temperature, compares it to the set point, and
computes an output, which is the set point for the coolant flow rate controller. This secondary
controller compares the set point to the coolant temperature measurement and adjusts the valve.
The principal advantage of cascade control is that the secondary measurement (jacket
temperature) is located closer to a potential disturbance in order to improve the closed-loop
response.
The reactor temperature can be influenced by changes in disturbance variables such as feed
rate or feed temperature; a feedback controller is employed to compensate for such disturbances
by adjusting a valve on the coolant flow to the reactor jacket. In a situation were an increase
occurs in the coolant temperature as a result of changes in the plant coolant system, this will
cause a change in the reactor temperature measurement. With a cascade control in place, the
jacket temperature is measured, and an error signal is sent from this point to the coolant control
valve; this reduces coolant flow, maintaining the heat transfer rate to the reactor at a constant
level and rejecting the disturbance. The cascade control configuration will also adjust the
setting of the coolant control valve when an error occurs in reactor temperature.

5.9.4.2: PH control systems
The pH control system measures the pH of the solution and controls the addition of a
neutralizing agent (on demand) to maintain the solution at the pH of neutrality, or within certain
acceptable limits. It is, in effect, a continuous titration. These pH control systems are
highly varied, and design depends on such factors as flow, acid or base strength or
variability of strength, method of adding neutralizing agent, accuracy of control (i.e., limits to
which pH must be held), and physical and other requirements. A cascade control is used in the
control of pH. The reactor will have sensing pH electrodes inside the reactor. The pH
electrodes are the measuring devices in this setup. In a situation a disturbance happens
inside the reactor, the measurement produced will be sent to the transducer and in turn a signal



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will be sent to the pH controller. The pH controller will process the deviation from the required
range of pH and necessary control measure will be sent either to add acid or the buffer
solution. A disturbance can be as a result of change in the strength of acid being fed into the
reactor as a reactant. The pH in the supply pipe will be measured and an error signal will be
sent from the pipe to the control valve, thereby maintain the required pH range in the reactor
and rejecting the disturbance.
For the control to be effective a hold-up time of 5 minutes or more is required and also adequate
mixing and agitation, otherwise, the sensing pH electrodes will detect an incorrect pH
and continue To call for additional reagent after the correct amount has been added. The
result of insufficient mixing is excessive cycling and poor pH control. As a rule of thumb,
turnover (mixing) time should be less than 20% of holdup time. If, for example, holdup
time is 10 minutes, turnover should be less than 2 minutes.





































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CHAPTER 6: ECONOMIC ANALYSIS

6.1 Introduction
For the commercial success of the project, financing estimation of project cost (fixed cost and
working capital), estimation of manufacturing unit cost, and calculation of annual net cash
flows were done to determine the economic feasibility of the project using profitability
estimators such as payback period (PP), breakeven point (BEP), return on investment.
Capital investments consisting of fixed capital and working capital required for the process is $
15 000 000.

Capital investment = fixed capital + working capital
The fixed capital cost (money needed to supply the necessary manufacturing and plant
facilities) comprises of direct and indirect cost. The direct costs and indirect costs for the
processes are given in table 16 and 17 as shown below respectively, with table 18 showing the
equipment costs.

Table 16: Direct costs for the recycling process


Description Cost USD $
Equipment 3 590 000.00
Land 1 500 000.00
Buildings 1 500 000.00
Vehicles 2 000 000.00
Instrumentation and control 410 000.00
Piping and electrical equipment 1 000 000.00
Services facilities 1 000 000.00
Total 11 000 000.00












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Table 17: Indirect costs


INDIRECT COST COST USD $
Engineering and supervision 8 00 000.00
Construction expenses 1 700 000.00
Contingency 5 00 000.00
Total indirect costs 3 000 000.00
Fixed capital = direct cost + indirect cost
= $ 11 000 000 + $ 3 000 000
= $ 14 000 000.00

Table 18: Summary of equipment costs ( www.matche.com/equipcost)


Description Quantity Cost US$
Filter 10 1400 000.00
Dryer 8 200 000.00
Conveyor belt 20 30 000.00
Optional vibrating feeder 10 60 000.00
Reactor (mixer/settler) 8 1600 000.00
Screening machine 7 50 000.00
Eddy current separator 2 80 000.00
Magnetic Separator 2 70 000.00
Electrostatic separator 2 80 000.00
Total 3 590 000.00
Working capital is needed for the operation of the plant. The working capital for the recycling
process is $ 1 000 000.

Capital investment = fixed capital + working capital

= $ 10 500 000.00

Sales represent the revenue of the recycling process.



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6.2: Sales calculations
Feed stock of the process = 20 000 tones / yr

Table 19: Metal prices (www.mining.com/market-data) 28 February 2012

Metal Price USD Amount recovered /year
/oz *exp6
Total value x
USD
Gold 380/oz (29.2% purity) 66.14 16 500 051
Silver 20/oz ( 15% pure) 0.048 82 370 12
Copper 3.2/oz (60% purity) 30.86 130 092


Total sales of metals = $ 24 867 155

6.3: Total cost
Total costs are the costs for operating the plant and selling the product. Total cost comprises
manufacturing costs and general expenses. For this process it was calculated on an annual basis.
Annual basis is the best calculation because it takes into consideration the seasonal variations,
equipment operation and smoothens out peaks and troughs in production volumes.
Total Cost = Manufacturing cost + general expenses + plant overheads
Manufacturing cost is divided into direct/variable and indirect/fixed cost.
Table 20: Direct manufacturing costs


Component description Cost
Catalyst 1 00 000.00
Transport expenses 900 000.00
Operating labor 1 500 000.00
Power and plant maintenance 2 500 000.00
Total 5 000 000.00
Fixed manufacturing costs are expenses which remain practically constant from year to year
and do not change with production rate. These include depreciation, loan interests and
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Depreciation is to be considered as a loss of value of fixed assets. Equipment and vehicles are
estimated to have a useful life of five years and a salvage value of $ 559 000.

D = (V - Vs) / t
Where D is the depreciation, V is the initial value of the assets, Vs is salvage value and t is the
useful life.

D = (5 590 000 - 559 000)/5

= $ 1 006 200

Table 21: Fixed manufacturing costs

Description Cost USD $
Depreciation 1 006 200.00
Insurance 1 500 000.00
Rentals 693 800.00
Total fixed manufacturing costs 3 200 000.00


Table 22: Total manufacturing costs

Direct cost 5 000 000.00
Indirect cost 3 200 000.00
Plant overheads 1 200 000.00
Total manufacturing costs 8 400 000.00


General expenses were estimated to be $ 2 000 000.00
TOTAL PRODUCT COST = manufacturing costs + general expenses
= $ 8 400 000 + 2 000 000
= $ 10 400 000






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6.4: Profitability evaluation
Profit = Sales - Total product cost

= $24 867 155 - $ 10 400 000.00

= $14 467 155

Return on investment = profit /investment
= $ 14 467 155/ $ 1500 000.00
= 0.96

Payback period = investment / profit
= $ 1 500 000.00 / $ 14 467 155
= 1.04 years

6.5: Break even analysis
Break even analysis is an analysis to determine the point at which revenue received equals the
costs associated with receiving the revenue. The break even chat is shown in fig 18 below

Break even = fixed cost / (sales - variable cost)

= $ 3 200 000/ ($24 867 155- $ 500 000.00) = 0.339























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Break even analysis diagram


































Figure 18: Break even chart























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CHAPTER 7: CONCLUSION AND RECOMMENDATIONS
7.1: Conclusion
Since metals have been recovered through a profitable and highly efficient process,
burning of e-waste in open environment or uncontrolled burning is reduced.
The process and conservation of the limited non-renewable resources through
recycling and reducing overall land digging proved successful.
H0 is accepted and we concluded that the project is feasible.

7.2: Recommendations
In order to align with international practice in e-waste management, it is recommended that the
Zimbabwean government should:
Develop specific e-waste legislation which facilitates an enabling environment to make
e-waste a resource rather than waste;
Develop a legal frame which identifies all the stakeholders and their responsibilities in
the e-waste life cycle;
Create a legal framework which encourages wide spectrum of participants in economic
activities drawn from responsible exploitation of e-waste;
Create a technical committee made up of industrial, commercial and domestic
stakeholder representatives to draft an e-waste policy for economic development;
Create a legal framework which recognizes shared responsibilities by manufacturers,
distributors, collectors, processors, recyclers and consumers in e-waste management;
Accept that e-waste is a form of a resource which can be imported or exported into or
out of Zimbabwe;
Another recommendation is that further studies on the recovery of palladium and lead have to
be carried out to make their recovery processes more economically feasible.















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7.3: References
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25. Sum E.Y.L, (1991) The Recovery of Metals from Electronic Scrap, Jom-J.Miner.
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