How Scrap Metal Is RecycledHow Scrap Metal Is Recycled

Metal is produced from ore deposits obtained through mining, smelting and refining. However, there are also secondary metals, which are leftovers from manufacturing and industrial operations. These metals come from obsolete commercial products that are now discarded by the previously mentioned industries. Through recycling these metals, they can be used once again in the general manufacturing cycle, particularly in the development of new products. This makes the manufacturing process more cost efficient and even more efficient in general. Secondary metals involve the process of locating scrap metals, recycling them in a facility, and reusing the obtained metals for new products.

Determining Metals to Be Recovered
How would you know if a scrap metal still has value if it is recovered? Scrapped metals should only be recovered if profit can be made out of them. There are certain criteria which can help determine what metals are worth recycling, such as the following:

• Purity of the metals
• Market conditions for recycled metals
• True value of the recycled metals
• Cost of locating, collecting and transporting scrap metals
• Cost of sorting and actually reusing the metals
• Cost of disposing all the waste materials after recycling

Reason to Recycle Metals
Since the late 19th century up until the early 20th century, the industrial revolution happened. When it did, this spiked up the need of more metals. In the 20th century, there was an exponential increase in the demand for metals. The production of metals in the 1980's was already a hundred fold than the production in the 1880's. This fast increased of the need for metals had some people worrying if the raw material reserves for these materials could still suffice for the demands of thee entire world. The quick consumption of the people during the industrial revolution was something beyond what was anticipated by the industry. Questions about the sustainability of the ore deposits, the possibility of the unending supply of the raw materials were in the minds of the people concerned. However, there were negative answers to these questions because the raw materials for metals are not sustainable and they are all the more limited in supply. This started the trend of reusing metals, which also does good things for the environment. Now, there are still many recoverable metals for future uses.

Classes of Scrap Metals
Scrap recycling refers to the process of recycling metals that have been used already, or scrap metals. Scrap or secondary metals can be classified into the following types:

• Old scrap. This is the most common type of scrap metals which are recycled from unused consumer goods. This refers to metals from used, discarded and worn-out goods, while others are from obsolete technological devices or rejects.

• Home scrap. This is the scrap derived from metals which are already in the refining or smelting plant.

• New scrap. This is the type of scrap metals which is still useful in the primary metal manufacturing. This scrap usually comes from the waste materials of the general manufacturing process.
by John Schofield
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