Research into end-to-end micro-recycling using intelligent robots to close the e-waste loop

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The SMaRT Centre has teamed up with SME Robological to R&D a vertically integrated micro-recycling solution for e-waste separation using a Baxter robot as key enabler. The SMaRT Centre has already developed techniques to recover precious metals from e-waste and Baxter will bring this process closer to commercial viability by reducing the intense/dangerous manual labour required to sort and recover. Baxter’s price point and flexibility makes this an appealing solution in closing the loop in e-waste recycling at the micro-scale level. In the first phase of the collaborative project, Robological will use a Baxter robot (SMaRTi) to de-solder and remove electronic components from discarded electronic Printed Circuit Boards (PCB). The robot will sort components based on their recyclable value.