Junk converted into new metals

Published: 23 April 2012

Junk and recycling of metals from junk are big business for the metal industry. Professor Bo Björkman leads a research group at the niversity, which among others are working to develop new knowledge about how to recycle metals from consumer products such as computers, cell phones and recycling of waste products from the metal industry - all to save the environment and increase the profitability of companies .

The copper, gold, ferrous metals and rare earth metals are examples of metals that can be recovered for example from junk electronics.

- For Europe that is heavily dependent on imports of metals, recycling of metals from the regular consumption increasingly important, says Bo Björkman Recently 17 million from Boliden to produce new knowledge about metals recycling and reuse of waste products. Boliden has doubled its capacity to recover metals from electronic junk so that we can support with new knowledge.

To extract more metals from scrapped consumer products is a main track of the research team. The other main approach is to utilize waste products from the steel industry, which is treated to remove pollutants before the slag is reused for example in road pavements. The metal industry's production processes are complex and residues from the process are often reused in another which requires careful study of how the processes affected by changes in production. In a new project with the steel industry, the researchers will develop a new kind of pellet that requires less energy in production and reduced greenhouse gas emissions.