Precious & Critical Metal Recovery

Recover precious materials from your assets using sustainable and innovative processes

Valuable metals for modern technology

E-waste contains precious materials including high-grade copper, silver, gold, platinum and palladium, which are critical to the continued production of modern technology. Sustainably mining and recycling the common metals that are found in e-waste is a huge environmental opportunity and the recovery of these elements back into the supply chain is critical on the path towards a circular economy. ​

We recognise the need for a more sustainable solution for the recovery of metals from printed circuit boards (PCBs). This led to the development of our proprietary bioleaching processes, which harnesses the power of naturally occurring bacteria to enable the recovery of precious metals in a more sustainable way. Our innovation in this field has received national recognition and multiple awards.

Welcome to the urban mine

The concept of Urban Mining describes the process of recovering valuable raw materials – mostly metals and minerals – from e-waste, rather than continuing to tear up the planet’s resources.  If we continue to mine all the precious earth elements at the rate we use in consumer technology, we will run out of materials to make new and green tech in the next century.

E-waste is growing by about two million tonnes every year. Currently, less than 20% is collected and recycled – meaning millions of tonnes of valuable resources are being lost to landfill which instead could be used to help produce the next generation of technology.

These are the ways we urban mine and support the circular economy:

Power & Network Cables

Are granulated, using cable granulating equipment, to produce valuable materials (plastic and copper granules) that re-enter the market for manufacturing new products.

Servers, Switches & Routers

Are separated into raw components such as copper, aluminium and steel; then recycled based on material.

Printed Circuit Boards

Are broken down further by content value and processed in n2s’s dismantling department and laboratories. Alongside our sister company Bioscope Laboratories, we are developing environmental methods for extracting the rich content of precious and rare earth metals.

At a glance

Roughly 200 tons of ore are dug up, moved, crushed, and processed to get to one ton of copper. Mining these materials is incredibly environmentally destructive. By recovering them from e-waste, we can reduce the need to mine new materials.

In 2022:

277.36

Tonnes of Copper Cable

was recycled

255.72

Tonnes of Copper

was recovered

678.3

Tonnes of Carbon (C02e)

was avoided

The Circular Economy

n2s have a zero-to-landfill policy and endeavour to minimise and advise on reducing waste. Reaching carbon net zero requires us to rethink how we do things and shift from a linear to a circular economy.​

Through sustainable innovation, we are developing methods to safely refine precious and critical materials.

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25 APRIL

The UK Technology Sustainability Forum
Andrew Gomarsall speaking

Andrew Gomarsall

Executive Director

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