Novel Partition Electrolysis Technology (PET) for Metal Recovery and Wastewater Treatment Applications

Technology Overview

Metal recovery from industrial waste has traditionally relied on hazardous and non-recyclable solvents such as cyanide and mineral acids. The more precious metals are preferentially precipitated and recovered as salts and the resulting spent solvent is subsequently sent for costly waste disposal. The less precious metals contained within the spent solvent are often sacrificed and not recovered.


The technology provider aims to address these inefficiencies by using recyclable solvents that can continuously and selectively extract metals from mixed metal waste, while recovering the metals in a high purity metallic form. This is made possible by the use of specially designed electrochemical cells with partition membranes that allows the recycling of solvent and recovery of metals to proceed efficiently and simultaneously.  


Based on the same technology, the technology provider has adapted this technology for advanced oxidation processes which can be applied to treat high organic strength toxic wastewater and increase the biodegradability of such wastewater for ease of downstream treatment. 

Technology Features & Specifications

​The technology consists of modular electrochemical cells installed with internal partition membranes, electrodes and sensors linked to a control system with data logging and operation control functions. Other supporting equipment such as reactors, pumps etc are sized accordingly to process a range of waste feedstocks such as:

  • Recovery of high purity Nickel, Tin, Copper, Palladium and Silver from various mixed waste 
  • Destruction of Phenol and Aniline in industrial wastewater from industries such as pharmaceutical, oil & gas, chemical etc

Potential Applications

The potential applications are as follows :

  •  An advanced oxidation pretreatment (AOP) of high organic strength and toxic wastewater such as dye, pharmaceutical, agrochemical, landfill leachate effluents and etc to increase biodegradability 
  • Selective recovery of base and/or precious metals from industrial waste such as spent catalysts, e-waste, spent chemicals and etc


Customer Benefits

For Metal recovery : 

  • Environmentally-friendly process
  • High purity recovery and capture of all/most metal species from waste
  • Economical process costs from continuous recycling of process solvent

For Wastewater Treamtment :

  • Use of electrons as clean reactants for destruction of toxic organic compounds
  • Convert toxic wastewater to biodegradable stream for ease of downstream treament
  • Modular set-up for quick expansion

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