High-Quality Plastics from Waste Electrical Equipment
Sep 09 2010
All over Europe, electrical and electronic scrap is the waste stream showing the highest growth rates. As electronic equipment contains the most varied kinds of materials, the recycling of such waste involves high demands with respect to separation and sorting processes.
In the United Kingdom MeWa opened a plant where old refrigerators, computers, vacuum cleaners, Hi-Fi systems, and other kinds of electrical waste are processed on two separate lines. For the recycling of high-quality plastics such as ABS (acrylonitrile butadiene styrene) or PC (polycarbonate) and of printed circuit boards MeWa uses three VARISORT N sorting systems made by S+S (Germany). "The decision to use the S+S systems was based on the high output quality of their VARISORT systems.
Innovative technology for outstanding value creation VARISORT N polymer separators are based on near-infrared technology. At the MeWa facility these systems automatically separate plastic from precrushed electrical waste. Operators can freely select which types of polymers should be separated. In one VARISORT sorting system the near-infrared sensor is also combined with a colour sen-sor. With this multi-sensor system the colour of the particle and its plastic type can be combined as sorting criteria, which results in an even higher separation accuracy for the pcb-fraction.
Peter Mayer, sales manager of sorting technology at S+S says: "Recycling companies that pro-duce clean, economically-priced material have the biggest competitive advantage. Because of their outstanding flexibility VARISORT sorting systems are ideal for the sorting of electrical waste. No matter what type of electrical waste should be sorted in the current job, a VARISORT will always optimally perform the sorting task by employing different kinds of sensors. Since the markets for recycled materials are rapidly changing especially in the field of electrical waste, and since quality requirements for recycled materials are high, and recycled material has to compete with the price of new materials, the VARISORT sorting system with its flexibility is a fu-ture-proof investment here because the employed technologies are highly sophisticated and the systems provide high-purity material fractions."
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