ABB Helps Turn Electronic Scrap Into Gold for Boliden

April 13, 2012
Boliden ramps up new plant that will triple its recycling capacity

ABB automation and power technologies are helping Boliden create the world's largest electronic scrap recycling facility by teaching them how to recover copper and valuable metals from electronic scrap (e-scrap), using only a fraction of the energy required to extract metals from ore.

Boliden, a metals company, is expanding the walls of its existing e-scrap recycling facility at the Rönnskär copper smelter in northern Sweden to make room for its expansion that will nearly triple its recycling capacity from 45,000 metric tons to 120,000 metric tons per year.

According to ABB, Rönnskär is an integrated metallurgical complex, which smelts and refines metals from mined copper concentrates and from recyclable materials like metal shred and e-scrap.

E-scrap comes from electronic equipment such as circuit boards and computer, and contains metals such as gold, silver and copper. Boliden's Kaldo furnace technology sorts and shreds e-scrap metal at Rönnskär where it is then smelted.  From there, the molten metal is moved over to the connected production lines for processing into quality products.

In 2010, recyclable materials made up 24% of Rönnskär's production with e-scrap only accounting for 6% of those recyclable materials.  Boliden anticipates the new plant will receach its top capacity during the second quarter of this year, with numbers to rise to 14% for e-scrap and 31% for recycled material.  This in return will make Rönnskär rely less on copper concentraite and become more energy efficient.

Read more of this article from ABB.