There are changes in WEEE (Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment) processing taking place right now, many of which are shifting away from traditional, labour intensive, inefficient, and mostly manual processes to the utilisation of automation and intelligent robotic solutions for materials recovery from WEEE.
This consensus is not carried on for those FPDs that are not ccfl backlit such as those with Light Emitting Diodes (LEDs) or with organic molecules (OLEDs) as the backlighting source.
After 17 years in WEEE Recycling I have seen a lot of change in the way electrical and electronic waste is managed.
Do you remember when the skip trucks proudly proclaimed, ‘Waste Removal’ and Waste Disposal’? That was re-marketed into the catch-all ‘Waste Recycling’ and now we have dropped the word ‘waste’ and are in the midst of ‘Resource Recovery’ and moving to ‘Critical Raw Material’ management.
Thing is, those that were removing ‘waste’ electrical items then and put them through their shredders, are pretty much still doing it now… except its ‘resource recovery’.
Well, not exactly but the point is that historic waste management techniques, where volume is king, are only slowly being complimented (not replaced!) by modern new and innovative technologies, adapting to the changing standards and regulations and flexibility to meet market demands.
At FPD Recycling, the introduction of a fully automated de-pollution system for all Flat Panel Displays (FPDs) (a fast-growing niche in WEEE management) has been received very well in the marketplace.
However, one question is outstanding…. The conversation flow will have the following proclamation…
‘Yes, we understand the need for a fully automated system to deal with CCFL flat screens but what about LEDs and others? Can we just shred these?’
It is agreed by most everyone involved in the recycling and management of waste FPDs that screens backlit with Cold Cathode Fluorescent Lamps (CCFLs) cannot be shredded. It is not acceptable due to the mercury content of ccfls which will contaminate the shredded fraction.