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Recycling Trends

The Challenges of eWaste - A Global Growth Industry

Studies over the past 25 years in both the US and the EU have shown that the average household 'technology footprint' has grown. Interestingly, the growth in the number and type of products utilised by homes and the residents within them has increased, BUT - the overall material (mass, weight, size, volume) has in fact decreased.

This study focused on 21 of the most common consumer technologies used during this time, including TVs, phones, computers, monitors, and entertainment devices. Most of this material reduction is due to phasing out heavy products like cathode ray tube TVs and substitution with lightweight flat panel displays. In addition, many products are being designed with lighter materials, like aluminum instead of plastic or steel.

eWaste is the fastest growing waste product in the world and the electronics used in most of the computers and mobile devices we use now contain some pretty nasty substances. Most of these 'smart devices' are now made with lead, beryllium, cadmium and chromium and pose quite the toxic threat once their useful life has ended.

Couple the toxicity of these elements with the difficult way they are also now built using plastic coatings over the top of them, and you face a real challenge to effectively recycle the materials within.

Besides the 'bad' components of eWaste in today's world, there is also the 'good' eWaste comprised of precious metals and other easy to reuse portions of whitegoods, TVs, stoves, microwaves, computers and mobiles. This type of waste has been the main focus of recycling for the bulk of the eWaste era but has been traditionally expensive and ineffective in the percentages of retrieval.

Today, there are many advancements in how we can remove the good, the bad and the ugly from the world's eWaste and it is only becoming more and more efficient as the commercial interest pour into the industry. ZERMA offers a wide range of advanced and efficient machines that are purpose built for eWaste applications whilst also offering solutions that are suited for other materials found inside of the same recyclable waste.

In most cases, the process of recycling starts with taking apart the largest pieces of any eWaste product to be further broken down via a shredding unit like our ZXS or ZSS machines. After this step a rough separation of plastics, metals and other materials is possible. The materials are then further reduced in hammer mills and granulators, to achieve a finer separation.

As this whole complex process of classifying and separating eWaste is extremely difficult - and often bespoke in nature - we will work in consultation with system integrators and engineers to provide you with high quality size reduction components to be integrated into your systems.

Whatever your eWaste needs, ideas, challenges or interests may be, make sure you contact us today to find out more information regarding effective systems and solutions. Talk to one of our consultants now on 03 8792 9777 or send an email to info@zerma.com.

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