Research & Teaching Faculty

Plastic separation planning for end-of-life electronics

TitlePlastic separation planning for end-of-life electronics
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2006
AuthorsWilliams, JAS, Grant, ER, Rios, P, Blyler, L, Tieman, L, Twining, L, Bonawi-Tan, W, Madden, M, Guthrie, NRM
JournalIeee Transactions on Electronics Packaging Manufacturing
Date PublishedApr
Type of ArticleArticle
ISBN Number1521-334X
KeywordsDESIGN, disassembly, electronics recycling, measurement, plastics, Raman spectroscopy, work

Important challenges remain for sustainable design, manufacture, use, and recycling of electronics including materials selection and disassembly time. This paper examines the value relationship between the quantity of plastics separated and the time required for disassembly and segregation. Labor,costs for disassembly can constitute a large portion of the total acquisition cost for a recycled material. We report work measurement studies conducted on the disassembly of 21 computers, 22 printers, and 32 monitors manufactured by 27 producers in the years from 1984 to 2001. Results include the weight per total separation time for each plastic part. Each recovered part is identified according to polymer resin using laser Raman spectroscopy by chemometric reference to a library of standards. We extrapolate time as well as the product input required to accumulate various specific types of plastic. We develop disassembly policies and show that they are effective for a variety of computer, printer, or monitor models, which is typical of the random product streams that arrive at electronics recycling facilities. The results demonstrate how new laser identification tech- nology and work measurement can be used for plastics separation planning.

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