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Separation Processes

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Battery electrode binder allows easier recycling

Recovering valuable metals, such as cobalt and nickel, from used lithium-ion batteries is emerging as a key capability because of anticipated high battery demand and material shortages. Researchers at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley, Calif.; www.lbl.gov) have developed a technology…

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Facts At Your Fingertips: Fractional Solvent-Free Melt Crystallization

Fractional crystallization is a stage-wise separation technique that relies upon the liquid-solid phase change and enables the purification of multi-component mixtures, as long as none of the constituents can act as a solvent to the others. Thanks to the level…

Evonik starts up new production plant for gas separation membranes in Austria

Evonik Industries AG (Essen, Germany) has started up a new hollow-fiber spinning plant for the production of gas separation membranes in Schörfling am Attersee in Austria. The new production capacity enables the company to meet the ongoing strong demand for…

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Capture ammonia reversibly with this new MOF

Production of ammonia by the Haber-Bosch process not only requires a lot of energy for the high-temperature (300–500°C) synthesis of NH3 itself, but the recovery of ammonia takes place by condensation at –20°C. As a result, large changes in both…

Hydrogen-enabled recovery of raw materials from ‘red mud’ and other metallurgical waste

Bauxite residue (red mud) is a byproduct from the smelting of aluminum. Like other waste slags from the metallurgy industry, bauxite residue is traditionally put into hazardous-waste landfills, although it contains a mixture of valuable raw materials in low concentrations.…

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Recycling halogens electrochemically

Next April, a six-year, €4-million project will begin that aims to develop an electrochemical process to recover halogens (chlorine, bromine and fluorine) from waste products. Funded as part of the CZS Breakthrough program of the Carl Zeiss Foundation (CZS; Heidenheim…

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Supercritical extraction drives ‘molecular washing machine’ for plastic waste

A new recycling process has been developed for scrap polypropylene (PP), a waste stream that is currently underserved by many plastics-recycling facilities. The process, developed by PureCycle (Orlando, Fla.; www.purecycle.com), aims to “wash the plastic molecules” using a series of…

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Making more from mining water with electrowinning

A new electrowinning process is being field-trialed at the Prieska copper-zinc mine operated by Orion Minerals Ltd. (Melbourne, Australia; www.orionminerals.com.au) in South Africa, which will enable the production of valuable products, including calcium, magnesium, iron and others, from contaminated mine…

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New method selectively extracts magnesium salt from seawater

Magnesium metal is important for several emerging potential sustainability-related applications, including carbon capture, low-carbon cement and energy storage. These potential applications are driving efforts to efficiently produce magnesium hydroxide, the raw material for manufacturing Mg metal. It is possible to…

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Facts At Your Fingertips: Crossflow Membrane Filtration Module Types

In crossflow membrane filtration (CMF), feed flow is parallel to the filtration surface (rather than perpendicular to it, as in conventional filtration). During a given pass, a portion of the feed permeates the membrane, while a larger portion is retained…