Incorrectly disposing of electronic waste like old phones, computers is a major problem for the environment and human health. These devices contain many precious metals like gold, silver and copper. Now a team of researchers from IIT Delhi has devised a method or technology that can be used to extract electronic waste (e-waste) and extract many other metals (metals), including silver and silver, without damaging the environment.
This technology designed by IITs will fulfill the need of ‘Smart Cities’, ‘Swachh Bharat Mission’, and ‘Self-reliant India’ by the Central Government. According to IIT Delhi, e-waste in the world is increasing with an annual rate of 3 to 5 percent. This was done under the leadership of Research Professor KK Pant in the Catalytic Reaction Engineering Lab in the Department of Chemical Engineering, IIT Delhi. Funds have been provided for this project by the Department of Science and Technology, Government of India.
E-waste is the major problem of the whole world with India
E-waste has become a big problem not only for India but for the whole world. The Global E-Waste Monitor Report 2020 states that in the year 2019, 53.7 million metric tons (MMT) of e-waste was generated worldwide and it is expected to reach 74.7 MMT by the year 2030. India is third in the world in making e-waste and in the year 2019 alone, 3.23 MMT e-waste has been born in India.
Amid growing consumerism (habit of using more and more things) in India, it is facing difficulties in managing e-waste. E-waste contains toxic or harmful substances and its collection, landfilling or improper recycling can pose a threat to human health and the environment. At the same time, IIT Delhi said that important and precious metals can be extracted from this e-waste, as well as energy production.
Metals can be extracted from this process by e-waste
For this, researchers at IIT Delhi have used a three-step process. This includes pyrolysis of e-waste (heating materials without oxygen), separating the metal content and then removing individual metals. It uses low-temperature roasting technology to separate metals such as copper, nickel, lead, zinc, silver and gold.
Through this technology, about 93 percent copper, 100 percent nickel, 100 percent zinc, 100 percent lead and 50 percent gold and silver can be obtained from e-waste. This process is also eco friendly, in which no toxic chemicals are released into the environment. This means that the disposal of e-waste can be done without causing any harm to the environment.
Will have to solve the problem of e-waste
For this project, the team of IIT Delhi has also been awarded the SRISTI-GYTI (Gandhian Young Technological Innovation) last year. IIT Delhi Chemical Engineering Department head Professor KK Pant said that electronic waste cannot be prevented from being generated, but with this if the problem of its disposal is not resolved, then mountains of solid waste will stand up, Which will be very difficult to deal with. Destroying items made of plastic and metals in particular is a long process. Now, in the coming few years with this technology, e-waste can be controlled and its whereabouts can be put in a proper way.