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Technical Characteristics of the Plant

A Unique Circular Approach for the Valorisation of Critical Raw Materials

What does the plant look like?

The Circular Materials technology is based on the supercritical properties of water, managed through a patented system that facilitates the precipitation of metal ions in solution.

Circular Materials enable the direct recovery of metals from industrial effluents with an efficiency of 99%

How does it work?

The liquids to be treated are mixed with supercritical water (T>374 °C and P>221 bar) in a patented mixer where an instantaneous precipitation process takes place: the dissolved metals behave as if they were in an apolar liquid, and form nucleation sites that grow in clusters to become nanoparticles or microparticles.

In other words ...

The extreme reduction of the dielectric constant of water under supercritical conditions (εRT=77 → εSC=2) reduces the solubility of metal ions, causing them to precipitate into finely dispersed powders.

The speciation of the product (oxide, hydroxide, metal) is governed by the redox and pH conditions, which are process parameters that are easily controlled through the use of 'recipes' developed by Circular Materials engineers according to customer requirements.

This suspension is finally cooled, the heat is recovered through heat exchangers, and the pressure is restored to ambient.

The liquids then enter a separation process, where the solid is recovered for valorization.

Water can then be routed through the standard chemical and physical purification processes without dissolved metals or complex organic compounds, drastically simplifying its treatment.

Circular Materials' supercritical water precipitation technology for metal recovery

Circular Materials has developed a patented technology, based on the properties of supercritical water, designed to effectively remove and recover metals from water. This innovative process also allows the oxidation of most organic matter (COD) and cyanides (>99.5%) to return a demetallized liquid that is easy to treat and can be routed to existing physicochemical plants without sludge production or at a much lower cost than the cost of disposing of the original untreated effluent.

Circular Materials' plant is designed to facilitate the precipitation of metal ions in solution, enabling the direct recovery of metals in industrial wastewater with 99% efficiency. The liquids to be treated are mixed with supercritical water (T>374 °C and P>221 bar) in a patented mixer where an instantaneous precipitation occurs. The dissolved metals behave as they would in an apolar liquid and form nucleation sites that grow in clusters to become nano- or microparticles.

The extreme reduction in the dielectric constant of water under supercritical conditions (εRT=77 → εSC=2) drastically reduces the solubility of metal ions, causing them to precipitate into finely dispersed powders. The speciation of the product (oxide, hydroxide, metal) is determined by the redox and pH conditions, process parameters that are easily controlled through 'recipes' developed by Circular Materials engineers according to customer requirements.

The suspension is finally cooled, and the heat is recovered through exchangers while the pressure is restored to ambient pressure. The liquids then enter a separation process, where the solid is recovered for utilization. The water can then be sent to the normal chemical-physical purification process without dissolved metals or complex organic forms, drastically simplifying its treatment.

A partner for the valorization of the secondary raw materials

Choosing Circular Materials as your partner for recovery and valorization of secondary raw material

Sustainable Solutions

We believe that sustainability not only benefits the planet, but is the only economical way to do business. All of our solutions are designed to help our partners and customers economically achieve sustainability goals.

Cutting-edge Technologies

Our proprietary processes and facilities are based on years of research and development and are constantly evolving to meet the needs of our partners and customers. We set the pace of development in various industries, investing substantial resources in the continuous improvement of our technologies to be at the forefront of major industry trends.

Tailor-made Solutions

Each partner is unique, with its own opportunities and paths to value. That is why we work closely together to meet specific needs and develop customized solutions to generate maximum value from each opportunity.

Continuous Support

Our solutions are not just about machines and processes; there are people behind the technology. Our continuous improvement approach is present in every interaction with partners and customers, and we work through every step of the qualification process to ensure the best possible outcome.

Partnership

Our, is a long-term commitment to build relationships based on trust, transparency, and mutual success

Traditional methods

The increased complexity in the composition of the effluent from galvanic processes requires effort in the management of the liquid, which must be properly pretreated before being sent for metal precipitation and clarification by flocculation. Similarly, after conventional treatment in the chemical-physical plant, the waters often require additional procedures to come within legal parameters, such as carbon filtration to reduce COD or the use of ion exchange resins to further reduce heavy metals.

In traditional treatments, the management of critical pollutants such as heavy metals, cyanides, and amines requires articulated treatments (typically redox reactions

pH, time and concentrations dependent) and that may generate additional problems downstream of treatment plants, such as the elevation of chlorides in emissions and the risk of heavy metals passing into the final sludge.

Metals precipitated and reduced to sludge by conventional physical chemical treatment are the same metals that are the main raw materials for the electroplating industry, and when separated by conventional systems, they become a costly and environmentally high-impact waste that must be disposed of in landfills as special waste.

Treatment processes and surface finishing industry generate a large amount of effluents that contain heavy and valuable metals. This generates significant environmental pressure: all current technological solutions capable of treating liquids containing heavy metals produce toxic sludge as a process result that must be stored in landfills equipped to receive special waste.

One of the most popular technologies for industrial water treatment is chemical-physical precipitation, which does not allow metals to be recycled and reused. Chemical-physical precipitation is based on insolubilization and flocculation reactions that separate metals from water, generating sludge that is then collected through filtration and drying operations. Metals thus inerted into sludge are eventually stored in landfills as special waste.

Circular Materials

Circular Materials has designed, patented, and built a new process for treating industrial wastewater based on the properties of supercritical water, which with extreme efficiency can recover 99 percent of dissolved metals.

Precious metals and oxides can be recovered on site, which can be directly transformed into salts for regeneration of the electroplating bath. A perfect example of circular economy.

Our technology works with any dissolved metal in all wastewater, even the most corrosive and complex. Plant capacity can be easily adapted with modular treatment units and concentration units. Operations are flexible, scalable and continuous.

More than 99% of dissolved metals are recovered as powder and separated from water, which is effectively de-metallized. Wastewater can be treated with modular units of 50 and 100L/h, with the possibility of integration with concentration units. Each plant has the right size to meet process requirements.

We help reduce greenhouse gas emissions through LCA analysis and certification, which can be shared with customers and partners to help achieve ESG goals. We ensure the highest environmental performance in the industry.

Our technology has been tested on more than 250 different wastewaters, with performance exceeding 99% on average. Our task is to provide an adaptive system that can work with fluids that have been qualified for the process.

Circular Materials engineers run a continuous improvement program to ensure that the software is up to date and that all technological and process improvements are transferred to the installed units

Several partners have already chosen our technology.

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