Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Innovative solutions for urban mining

31.05.2013
Urban mining is a performed by extracting metal resources from electronic products. Gold from PCBs and Lithium from seawater - read more about Prof. Jai-Koo Park of Hanyang University on his research into urban mining.

Jai-Koo Park of Natural Resources and Environmental Engineering is the director of the Mineral Processing and Environment Processing Lab at Hanyang University.



Park’s recent publications include "Millimeter-sized spherical ion-sieve foams with hierarchical pore structure for recovery of lithium from seawater" in the Chemical Engineering Journal, and "Preparation of Sizable and Uniform-Sized Spherical Ceramic Foams: Drop-in-oil and Agar Gelation" in the Journal of American Ceramic Society.

While alternative energy is considered a substitute for our reliance on oil, as of yet there has not been found a substantial replacement source for metal resources. Limitations of natural resources and constant increases in prices have brought a sense of urgency to the importance of ‘urban mining’.

Urban mining is a performed by extracting metal resources from electronic products. The traditional form of mining involves prospecting, mining, and processing. However, urban mining only requires processing, thus reducing the costs of investing in prospecting and mining.

The question lies on the methodology. After comminution, a proper crushing and grinding process, the materials go through concentration and separation. The particle comparatively affluent with metal element, placed in an aqueous solution, will then be divided via leaching.

During comminution, importance lies on the liberation of valuable metal. After solvent extraction, porous nano-materials are applied in the process of separating metallic ions from the aqueous solution.

In the past, Park focused his research on creating innovative porous ceramic materials. By redirecting his expertise in porous ceramic materials, Park applied his work to the recovery of materials.

For example, in an effort to effectively recover Au (gold), Park devised innovative methods of liberating and separating valuable metal sources from printed circuit boards (PCBs). One technique of Prof. Park’s for recovering valuable metal sources from PCBs of disposed small domestic appliances involves using a device for separating electronic components from printed circuit board assembly (PCBA). Another of his technique separates valuable metal from pulverized PCB.

In addition, Park’s research interest also lies in securing lithium. Major growth in the lithium-ion battery industry has led to an increase in lithium demand. Lithium ion-sieves (LISs) have found to be suitable for lithium recovery from seawater due to their low toxicity, low cost, and high chemical stability.

An alternative solution was provided by Park in which he succeeded in recovering lithium from seawater by using millimeter-sized spherical ion-sieve foams.

Park diligently researched to find an absorbent for lithium and was finally able to determine that millimeter-sized SIFs prepared from spinel lithium manganese oxide via a combined process of foaming, drop-in-oil, and agar gelation was the solution.

Park’s method uses an aqueous agar solution as the binder, resulting in an environmental friendly, rapid gelation at low temperatures, that has high gelling strength, low manufacturing cost, and involves a simple manufacturing process.

Current research is underway in extracting medium and heavy rare earth minerals such as Ce and La from heavy minerals such as monazite or illmenite recovered from sub-marine sediment. Moreover, Park is focusing on developing a minetailing geopolymer for back filing of mine goaf as a means of recycling by-products of mines.

Article written by Jisoo Lee: themanjsl@hanyang.ac.kr

Joohong Ahnn | Research asia research news
Further information:
http://www.hanyang.ac.kr/english/
http://www.researchsea.com

More articles from Materials Sciences:

nachricht Machine-learning predicted a superhard and high-energy-density tungsten nitride
18.07.2018 | Science China Press

nachricht In borophene, boundaries are no barrier
17.07.2018 | Rice University

All articles from Materials Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: First evidence on the source of extragalactic particles

For the first time ever, scientists have determined the cosmic origin of highest-energy neutrinos. A research group led by IceCube scientist Elisa Resconi, spokesperson of the Collaborative Research Center SFB1258 at the Technical University of Munich (TUM), provides an important piece of evidence that the particles detected by the IceCube neutrino telescope at the South Pole originate from a galaxy four billion light-years away from Earth.

To rule out other origins with certainty, the team led by neutrino physicist Elisa Resconi from the Technical University of Munich and multi-wavelength...

Im Focus: Magnetic vortices: Two independent magnetic skyrmion phases discovered in a single material

For the first time a team of researchers have discovered two different phases of magnetic skyrmions in a single material. Physicists of the Technical Universities of Munich and Dresden and the University of Cologne can now better study and understand the properties of these magnetic structures, which are important for both basic research and applications.

Whirlpools are an everyday experience in a bath tub: When the water is drained a circular vortex is formed. Typically, such whirls are rather stable. Similar...

Im Focus: Breaking the bond: To take part or not?

Physicists working with Roland Wester at the University of Innsbruck have investigated if and how chemical reactions can be influenced by targeted vibrational excitation of the reactants. They were able to demonstrate that excitation with a laser beam does not affect the efficiency of a chemical exchange reaction and that the excited molecular group acts only as a spectator in the reaction.

A frequently used reaction in organic chemistry is nucleophilic substitution. It plays, for example, an important role in in the synthesis of new chemical...

Im Focus: New 2D Spectroscopy Methods

Optical spectroscopy allows investigating the energy structure and dynamic properties of complex quantum systems. Researchers from the University of Würzburg present two new approaches of coherent two-dimensional spectroscopy.

"Put an excitation into the system and observe how it evolves." According to physicist Professor Tobias Brixner, this is the credo of optical spectroscopy....

Im Focus: Chemical reactions in the light of ultrashort X-ray pulses from free-electron lasers

Ultra-short, high-intensity X-ray flashes open the door to the foundations of chemical reactions. Free-electron lasers generate these kinds of pulses, but there is a catch: the pulses vary in duration and energy. An international research team has now presented a solution: Using a ring of 16 detectors and a circularly polarized laser beam, they can determine both factors with attosecond accuracy.

Free-electron lasers (FELs) generate extremely short and intense X-ray flashes. Researchers can use these flashes to resolve structures with diameters on the...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

Leading experts in Diabetes, Metabolism and Biomedical Engineering discuss Precision Medicine

13.07.2018 | Event News

Conference on Laser Polishing – LaP: Fine Tuning for Surfaces

12.07.2018 | Event News

11th European Wood-based Panel Symposium 2018: Meeting point for the wood-based materials industry

03.07.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

Machine-learning predicted a superhard and high-energy-density tungsten nitride

18.07.2018 | Materials Sciences

NYSCF researchers develop novel bioengineering technique for personalized bone grafts

18.07.2018 | Life Sciences

Why might reading make myopic?

18.07.2018 | Health and Medicine

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>