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Biological filter recovers up to 80% of gold in e-scrap

    Finland – Despite active research into the use of biological solutions for recycling, these are still rarely employed in metal recovery chains. But the Finland-based VTT Technical Research Centre now claims to have developed a biological filter made of mushroom mycelium mats which enables the recovery of ‘as much as 80%’ of gold in e-scrap.

    A partner in a European ′Value from Waste′ project, VTT has developed both biological and mechanical pre-treatment methods for more efficient recovery of precious metals from discarded electronics. Other methods developed by researchers have included recovery of gold from dissolved materials by biosorption and extraction, using as few harmful chemicals as possible.

    The ′uniqueness′ of the method lies in the structure of the biomass, claims VTT. ′Different filament structures can be formed, for example, into biological filters, which makes further industrial processing of precious metals easier,′ it explains.

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