Japan Partnership for Circular Economy

Japan Partnership for Circular Economy


Recovery and Recycle System for Precious Metals in Municipal Solid Waste Incineration Residue

[Company / organization] TAIHEIYO CEMENT CORPORATION

Time started

Start of business: 2015

Technology and business model

This is a project to efficiently recover and recycle precious metals such as gold and silver, which are contained in very small amounts in the incineration residue, by using the eco-cement system that stably and massively recycles municipal waste incineration residue. The eco-cement system is a specialized cement production system developed mainly for the treatment of municipal waste incineration residues, etc., as opposed to the treatment of waste received at existing cement plants. This is a cement production process in which more than 50% of the raw materials for cement can be made from incineration residues of municipal solid waste. In this process, metals in the incineration residue are incorporated into the gas as volatiles by heating at more than 1,350°C in the rotary kiln, and 100% of the gas during the production process is trapped and recovered as metal resources in a wet processing heavy metal recovery system. The plant has been recovering copper, zinc, lead, etc., since the beginning of its operation, but with the advancement of research and development, it has also become possible to recover precious metals such as gold and silver. This technology not only makes it possible to recycle the incineration residue of municipal solid waste as cement, which is a building material that supports infrastructure, but also enables the recovery of metal resources in the incineration residue that are not recovered in the incineration and landfill treatment of municipal solid waste. This technology can utilize the cement manufacturing process as a process similar to primary smelting in smelting technology, and is an innovative technology that can recover resources from urban mines.

Currently, general domestic cement plants are also commercializing the application of this technology.

Achievements and goals

Gold and silver have been collected since 2015 and are being sold to non-ferrous smelters.

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