An Investigation on Advances in Metal Extraction from Electronic Wastes by Supercritical Water and Carbon Dioxide

Document Type : Review Paper


Department of Mechanical Engineering,University of Hormozgan, P. O. Box3995, Iran



Today, the application of supercritical fluid extraction (SFE) has been the focus of many researchers in various industries due to suitable operating conditions, environmental friendliness (no use of organic solvents) and high efficiency. In this process, a solvent is used for separation in supercritical conditions. Pharmaceutical, oil extraction, and oil and gas industries have conducted extensive research in this field. Electronic and electric devices are constantly being upgraded and updated due to the rapid advancement of science and technology, which creates a number of issues with handling electric and electronic waste (e-waste). The most significant issue is that it is challenging to safely dispose of halogen flame retardants and refractory polymers in e-waste. Supercritical fluid (SCF) techniques provide significant environmental benefits over previous disposal methods like pyrolysis and acid leaching since they pose no dangers for air or water contamination. This study discusses and provides a summary of the basic concepts and appropriate factors of supercritical fluid extraction (SFE). SCF methods were claimed to have recovered precious metals, base metals, and other inorganic minerals from e-waste with a recovery efficiency of further 93%. This study reviews the recent advances in supercritical water (SCW) and supercritical carbon dioxide (SCCO2) extraction technologies for metal recovery from e-wastes. On the other hand, hybrid technologies are significantly improving in this field which could be considered for future studies.


Main Subjects

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