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Review
. 2010 Dec;30(12):2548-59.
doi: 10.1016/j.wasman.2010.07.010. Epub 2010 Aug 10.

An overview of metals recovery from thermal power plant solid wastes

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Review

An overview of metals recovery from thermal power plant solid wastes

Amr S Meawad et al. Waste Manag. 2010 Dec.

Abstract

Thermal power plants (TPPs) that burn fossil fuels emit several pollutants linked to the environmental problems of acid rain, urban ozone, and the possibility of global climate change. As coal is burned in a power plant, its noncombustible mineral content is partitioned into bottom ash, which remains in the furnace, and fly ash, which rises with flue gases. Two other by-products of coal combustion air-pollution control technologies are flue gas desulfurization (FGD) wastes and fluidized-bed combustion (FBC) wastes. This paper analyzed and summarized the generation, characteristics and application of TPP solid wastes and discussed the potential effects of such solid wastes on the environment. On this basis, a review of a number of methods for recovery of metals from TPP solid wastes was made. They usually contain a quantity of valuable metals and they are actually a secondary resource of metals. By applying mineral processing technologies and hydrometallurgical and biohydrometallurgical processes, it is possible to recover metals such as Al, Ga, Ge, Ca, Cd, Fe, Hg, Mg, Na, Ni, Pb, Ra, Th, V, Zn, etc., from TPP solid wastes. Recovery of metals from such wastes and its utilization are important not only for saving metal resources, but also for protecting the environment.

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