Comparison of the Effectiveness of Biological and Chemical Leaching of Copper, Nickel and Zinc from Circuit Boards
 
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Cardinal Stefan Wyszynski University in Warsaw, Faculty of Biology and Environmental Science, Department of Environmental Biotechnology and Bio-economy
CORRESPONDING AUTHOR
Dorota Anna Andrzejewska-Górecka   

Cardinal Stefan Wyszynski University in Warsaw, Faculty of Biology and Environmental Science, Department of Environmental Biotechnology and Bio-economy
Publish date: 2019-10-01
 
J. Ecol. Eng. 2019; 20(9):62–69
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ABSTRACT
The progress of civilization brings with it the development of advanced technologies and increased demand for electric and electronic equipment. That directly influences the increase of produced e-waste, called Waste of Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE). Due to the fact that deficit and critical metals are running out throughout the World, and due to increased demand for those metals, their alternative source and recovery methods have to be found. As an alternative biotechnological methods can be used. The advantage of biological methods over chemical processes is its selectivity in regard to different metal groups, simplicity of technological process, economic effectivity (lower energy expenditure) and lack of negative impact on environment. The aim of this work was to compare the effectiveness of biological and chemical leaching of copper (Cu), nickel (Ni) and zinc (Zn) from circuit boards (PCBs).The experiment was conducted in variants which included factors such as temperature (24°C and 37°C) and speed of mixing. In case of all metals higher effectiveness was achieved in variants conducted in the temperature of 24°C and faster mixing than in temperature of 37°C and slower mixing. In case of cooper and zinc better results of metal removal were achieved in bioleaching variant. In case of nickel faster result of metal removal were achieved in chemical leaching, but at the end of the experiment the effectivity of chemical leaching and biological leaching was similar. The maximum efficiency of cooper, nickel and zinc release was adequately 100%, 90%, 65%.