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J Hazard Mater. 2013 Jun 15;254-255:10-7. doi: 10.1016/j.jhazmat.2013.03.028. Epub 2013 Mar 22.

Chelant-induced reclamation of indium from the spent liquid crystal display panels with the aid of microwave irradiation.

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  • 1Institute of Science and Engineering, Kanazawa University, Kakuma, Kanazawa 920-1192, Japan. hhiroshi@t.kanazawa-u.ac.jp

Abstract

Indium is a rare metal that is mostly consumed as indium tin oxide (ITO) in the fabrication process of liquid crystal display (LCD) panels. The spent LCD panels, termed as LCD-waste hereafter, is an increasing contributor of electronic waste burden worldwide and can be an impending secondary source of indium. The present work reports a new technique for the reclamation of indium from the unground LCD-waste using aminopolycarboxylate chelants (APCs) as the solvent in a hyperbaric environment and at a high-temperature. Microwave irradiation was used to create the desired system conditions, and a substantial abstraction of indium (≥80%) from the LCD-waste with the APCs (EDTA or NTA) was attained in the acidic pH region (up to pH 5) at the temperature of ≥120 °C and the pressure of ~50 bar. The unique point of the reported process is the almost quantitative recovery of indium from the LCD-waste that ensured via the combination of the reaction facilitatory effect of microwave exposure and the metal extraction capability of APCs. A method for the selective isolation of indium from the extractant solution and recycle of the chelant in solution is also described.

Copyright © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

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