Dissolving Circuit Boards for Easier Electronics Recycling

November 5, 2012 · Print This Article

Recycling and reusing electronic components could be made much easier with a new polymer that produces a circuit board that will dissolve when immersed in hot water. The circuit board was developed by the UK’s National Physical Laboratory (NPL) as part of the ReUSE (Reuseable, Unzippable, Sustainable Electronics) project.

The circuit board material is hardy suitable to resist ordinary heat and moisture, but full immersion in hot water acts to release the components from the board.

This allows for by 90% of

the electronics materials to be recovered, whereas typically less than 2% of the materials on a circuit board are re-used.

Although this is not necessarily favourable for the repairability of electronics, it could be a definite improvement in helping get a handle on the growing mountains of electronics waste and manufacture recycling of electronics components and recovery of minerals an easier process.

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[Source] Cynthia


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