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Recycling Process

  • Metals recycling is a ‘pyramid’ industry which includes many small, family owned companies, as well as large, international businesses.
  • All metals are made from non-renewable minerals and ores (such as iron-ore) found in the soils and rocks of the earth's crust.
  • Metal products such as steel and aluminium cans can be recycled through the kerbside recycling system.
  • Metals recycling protects the environment and saves energy.
  • Steel cans including aerosol (spray) cans, can be recycled through the kerbside collection system.
  • The manufacturing processes generally do not change the properties of the metals (except in alloys and other mixtures), only the shapes. Therefore recycling metals is a simple process of melting and reshaping.
  • Aluminium is made from an ore called bauxite. Australia is one of the largest producers of bauxite.
  • Converting bauxite to aluminium is not as simple as melting the ore and recovering the metal.


  • Melting separation technology is the technology of separating the element containing the radioactive isotope in the radioactive metal waste, and reducing concentration of radioactivity.
  • A new duallabeling technique in which intracellular and extracellular metal pools in prey cells are separately labeled with 2 isotopes of a single trace metal.
  • Oxygen Sparging Method is the metal recycling process that uses a pyro-metallurgical metal separation technique (without radio nuclides). This process utilizes the difference of the oxygen affinities between metals.
  • Dragout reduction and recovery is an important P2 technique for metal finishing. It is a simple technology used by metal finishers to return plating chemicals to their original bath before they become integrated into a waste stream.
  • A new technique is available to predict where metal quality is lost in the recycling process could make recycling cost-effective and reduce the need for raw material inputs.


  • Metals recycling is a £4.5billion UK industry, processing ferrous and non ferrous metal scrap into vital secondary raw material for the smelting of new metals. The industry employs over 8,000 people and makes a net contribution to UK balance of trade.
  • Metals recycling supplies a major worldwide industry. Manufacturing of metals continues to be one of the largest UK manufacturing sectors, employing more people, and contributing more value to the UK economy, than motor and aerospace combined.
  • Recycled materials account for between 30 and 60 percent of the total world consumption of metals and are a major component in the availability of minerals and metals for future generations as minerals and metals are not “consumed” in the way some other nonrenewable resources are.

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