Kinetics And Efficacy Of Froth Flotation For The Recovery Of Metal Values From Pulverized Printed Circuit Boards

Vidyadhar, A and Das, Avimanyu (2012) Kinetics And Efficacy Of Froth Flotation For The Recovery Of Metal Values From Pulverized Printed Circuit Boards. In: XXVI International Mineral Processing Congress (IMPC) 2012 , September 24-28, 2012, Hotel Ashok, Diplomatic Enclave, New Delhi.



Printed circuit boards (PCBs) constitute a major part of electrical and electronic equipment containing valuable metals such as Cu, Ni, Au, Ag, Pd, Fe, Sn, Pb, etc. The concentration of base and precious metals in PCBs is observed to be several times more than those in their respective ores. Therefore, the recycling of PCBs is necessary to recover the valuable materials. However, the ultrafine particles pose a big challenge. Removal of them is suggested prior to processing by flotation. Froth flotation is observed to be a promising technique for rejecting the plastics from the comminution product. In the present work, enrichment of ground 1.0 mm PCB powder was investigated through flotation route by varying the operating variables such as frother dosage, pulp density, air flow rate and rotational speed of the impeller. The liberation studies indicate that excellent liberation of metal values is achieved from the non-metallic constituents at -1.0 mm size and below. The particulate system is quite rich in metal value with about 23% total metal content. The non-metallic constituents such as plastics are observed to possess strong hydrophobicity while the metal particles in the pulverized mass are hydrophilic in nature. Froth flotation kinetics is studied in depth with a view to facilitate high rejection of the plastics and identify optimum operating conditions for the same. A number of experiments are performed to establish the influence of the operating variables on flotation performance. The conditions for achieving higher yield of the metal-rich fraction with respect to a specified grade are discussed in the light of the experimental results. It is found that the requirement of reagents is negligible which could be a very important factor from the commercial stand point. Single-stage flotation increases the metal content from 23% to over 32% with a mass yield of around 75% and over 90% recovery of metal values. 32% of the materials in the feed could be effectively rejected in the float fraction losing less than 4% metal values. The dependence of kinetics on the process variables is also discussed. It was concluded that a high rotor speed helps in efficiently rejecting the plastics. Frother should be added to help stabilize the froth and enhance the kinetics. A moderate air flow is required while pulp density must be kept low for efficient pre-concentration. It is established that the entire -1.0 mm comminution product could be treated by flotation for generating a pre-concentrate.

Item Type:Conference or Workshop Item (Poster)
Official URL/DOI:
Uncontrolled Keywords:Printed circuit boards, recycling, froth flotation, kinetics, recovery
Divisions:Mineral Processing
ID Code:6188
Deposited By:Dr. Vidyadhar Ari
Deposited On:23 Nov 2012 10:10
Last Modified:23 Nov 2012 10:10
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