Zhenming Xu and colleagues at Shanghai Jiao Tong University say they have developed a recycling and recovery technology designed especially for disposal of printed circuit boards. The researchers say the technology, which supposedly has advantages over previously proposed methods, involves special crushing of scrap boards, followed by separation of the metallic and non-metallic materials with an electric field. Printed circuit boards (self-contained modules of interconnected electronic components formed by a thin layer of conducting material "printed" on the surface of an insulating board) may contain materials potentially toxic if released to the environment, but they also make an ideal target for recycling as they are a rich potential source of valuable metals and other reusable materials. The process is described in the current issue of the journal Environmental Science & Technology.
News source: Physorg