Metal Sorting - Wire Recovery - Metal - Metal Recycling

Cable materials were often lost in the treatment and sorting processes available till now, which meant a financial loss due to the high proportion of copper they contain. New sorting technologies such as the FINDER are now capable of detecting these cables. Recently it has become possible to separate metals and copper cables. Previously, cable materials were often lost in the treatment and sorting process. This meant a financial loss due to the high proportion of copper they contain. New sorting technologies such as the FINDER and the FINDER [poly] are now capable of detecting these cables, transferring them to a metal product and then finally sorting them in a further step into a cable fraction of outstanding purity.

A good example of a high-quality product is copper wiring and insulated cables stemming from various treatment processes. Secondary copper smelting plants and cable treatment companies require high-quality input in order to work efficiently. Previously untapped sources of copper in the form of insulated copper cables were residual fractions from treatment processes or hand sorting of fractions such as:

  • Heavy shredder fraction (from ELV)
  • Light shredder fraction
  • E-scrap/ WEEE
  • Residual materials and metal product from swim-sink plants

The combination of two TOMRA sorting technologies finally led to the development of the FINDER [poly]. The device is equipped with both sensor technologies. The newly developed sensor technology and the SUPPIXX® image processing make it possible to detect and separate even the smallest of metal particles.

The two signals are combined and processed to produce one statement. This makes it possible to generate a “cable signal” from the metal signal of the inductive sensor and the polymer signal of the NIR sensor.

Recently it has become possible to separate metals and copper cables. Previously, cable materials were often lost in the treatment and sorting process. This meant a financial loss due to the high proportion of copper they contain. New sorting technologies such as the FINDER and the FINDER [poly] are now capable of detecting these cables, transferring them to a metal product and then finally sorting them in a further step into a cable fraction of outstanding purity.

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The Challenge

Copper cables and free copper particles are valuable components which are contained in lots of waste fractions such as:

  • Heavy fractions from automobile shredders (SSF)
  • Light fractions from automobile shredders (SLF)
  • Waste electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE)
  • Residual materials and metals from dense medium separation systems (DMS)

The safe identification of copper cable in these material flows with conventional sorting technology is not possible. Cable processors and secondary copper smelters demand high purity mono-fractions of copper concentrate and cables. These can only be efficiently gained by using the new sensor-supported sorting systems.

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The Solution

TOMRA Sorting has developed a sorting system which unifies two technologies: The FINDER [poly] not only recognises fine metal particles with a highly-sensitive electromagnetic sensor (EM) but can also identify insulating polymer coatings made of PVC, PP, PE or rubber with an additional highresolution near infrared sensor (NIR).

The signals from both sensors are analysed with the help of the newly developed SUPPIXX® image processing technology which delivers high-precision results. This means that the insulated copper cables can be safely identified and separated with the highest degree of purity.

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The Advantages

  • Optimum value creation due to high recovery
  • High flow rate due to efficient sorting systems
  • Short amortisation period for TOMRA Sorting machines
  • Recovery of copper particles including undersized particles
  • Less amounts of residual waste and lower disposal costs
  • Modular configuration and simple integration in existing systems
  • No metal losses due to a two-stage concept
  • High quality products increase marketing opportunities

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The System Concept

TOMRA sorting systems can be seamlessly integrated into your own system and adapted to suit the material and particle size. The above flowchart shows the stage at which technology sorting system can be optimally deployed.

The input material, which has been crushed and separated from light parts, is then filtered using defined particle sizes. Magnets and eddy current separators separate the ferrous or non-ferrous metals.

The FINDER then separates the remaining metals including insulated copper cables. The FINDER [poly] gains a high purity mono-cable fraction from this metal concentrate. No metal particles are lost thanks to the two-stage sorting which results in the maximum recovery of cables and copper particles.