REWAS 2013 pp 192-201 | Cite as

Recycling-Oriented Product Characterization for Electric and Electronic Equipment as a Tool to Enable Recycling of Critical Metals

  • Vera Susanne Rotter
  • Perrine Chancerel
  • Maximilian Ueberschaar


To establish a knowledge base for new recycling processes of critical elements, recycling-orientated product characterization for Electric and Electronic Equipment (EEE) can be used as a tool. This paper focuses on necessary data and procedures for a successful characterization and provides information about existing scientific work. The usage of this tool is illustrated for two application: Hard Disk Drives (HDD) and Liquid Crystal Display (LCD) panels. In the first case it could be shown that Neodymium and other Rare Earth Elements are concentrated in magnets (25% by weight) and contribute largely to the end demand of Neodymium. Nevertheless, recycling is limited by the difficult liberation and competing other target metals contained in HDD. In the second case it could be shown that also for this application the usage of Indium is concentrated in LCDs, but unlike in magnets the concentration is lower (200 ppm). The design of LCDs with two glued glass layers and the Indium-Tin-Oxide layer in between make the Indium inaccessible for hydro-metallurgical recovery, the glass content puts energetic limitations on pyro-metallurgical processes. For the future technical development of recycling infrastructure we need an in depth understanding of product design and recycling relevant parameters for product characterization focusing on new target metals. This product-centered approach allows also re-think traditional “design for recycling” approaches.

Key Words (3)

Recycling WEEE critical metals 


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Copyright information

© TMS (The Minerals, Metals & Materials Society) 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Vera Susanne Rotter
    • 1
  • Perrine Chancerel
    • 1
  • Maximilian Ueberschaar
    • 1
  1. 1.Technische Universität BerlinBerlinGermany

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