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Hello I am hoping someone can share their knowledge I encountered a problem on a recent project at a site I visited. They are encountering enormous amounts of waste copper wire which they are sending away to scrap.

My background is in the mining sector and I wanted to know what the process is to get copper wire into granulated copper and the wire armor and insulation in separate containers.

I know from research that a grinder will break up the cables. My main confusion is within separation of the copper/metals and insulation. Is this achieved used hydrocyclones, magnetic separation, vibration screens or flotation cells (only because a YouTube video appeared to mention this).

Just to confirm I am specifically asking how they separate the different materials as in https://youtu.be/ZKN5MtrY5Cg

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There are quite a few ways I've seen this happen. The lowest tech way (and least environmentally friendly) is burning the insulation off like they do in 3rd world countries, up to slicing/crushing the insulation off. This video shows both of those last two methods. I was searching for a video I saw a long while back that used this method on a vast scale but couldn't find it. I've no experience of a fully automated process, all of these still involve a fair amount of manual labour.

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For the wire armour you gave the answer : magnetism as long as the armour is not aluminium based...

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You say "sent to scrap", I will bet a large amount of money that somewhere a scrap dealer/ recycler is separating all the copper . Single source scrap is easy to separate, likely by hand. Likely , then it will be processed ( chopped ,maybe burned, etc) to remove insulation and armor ( no doubt armor is steel so magnetic separation.). Because of it's high value copper base waste is often sorted by hand . An experienced sorter can do an impressive job separating various coppers, brasses, and bronzes into several categories.

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