Using the membrane biofilm reactor (MBfR) to recover platinum group metals (PGMs) as nanoparticles from wastewater

B. G. Lusk, C. Zhou, A. Tomaswick, B. Rittmann

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

2 Scopus citations

Abstract

Platinum group metal (PGM) miners and recycling facilities are losing ∼$2 billion (~10% of the total market value) of PGM annually in wastewater and tailing. The membrane biofilm reactor (MBfR) is a modular biotechnology which contains a microbial community that can reduce and recover PGMs and potentially precious metals inclduing gold (Au) at mining, refining, or manufacturing sites at concentrations between 0.04 and -500 ppm. The biofilm employed in the MBfR naturally accumulates PGMs, particularly palladium (Pd) and platinum (Pt), as nanoparticles that have high economic value due to their high specific surface area and superior catalytic capability. In addition, when recovered as nanoparticles using an MBfR, PGMs have ∼6x more value than bulk PGMs. In contrast, conventional physical and chemical processes for PGM recovery are costly and introduce contamination into the environment. Thus, MBfR technology is a relatively low-cost and benign alternative to conventional PGM recovery techniques.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationTechConnect Briefs 2018 - Materials for Energy, Efficiency and Sustainability
EditorsBart Romanowicz, Fiona Case, Fiona Case, Matthew Laudon
PublisherTechConnect
Pages134-137
Number of pages4
Volume2
ISBN (Electronic)9780998878232
StatePublished - Jan 1 2018
Externally publishedYes
Event11th Annual TechConnect World Innovation Conference and Expo, Held Jointly with the 20th Annual Nanotech Conference and Expo,the 2018 SBIR/STTR Spring Innovation Conference, and the Defense TechConnect DTC Spring Conference - Anaheim, United States
Duration: May 13 2018May 16 2018

Other

Other11th Annual TechConnect World Innovation Conference and Expo, Held Jointly with the 20th Annual Nanotech Conference and Expo,the 2018 SBIR/STTR Spring Innovation Conference, and the Defense TechConnect DTC Spring Conference
CountryUnited States
CityAnaheim
Period5/13/185/16/18

Keywords

  • Biofilm
  • Bioremediation
  • Platinum group metals
  • Precious metal recovery
  • Wastewater treatment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Materials Science(all)

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  • Cite this

    Lusk, B. G., Zhou, C., Tomaswick, A., & Rittmann, B. (2018). Using the membrane biofilm reactor (MBfR) to recover platinum group metals (PGMs) as nanoparticles from wastewater. In B. Romanowicz, F. Case, F. Case, & M. Laudon (Eds.), TechConnect Briefs 2018 - Materials for Energy, Efficiency and Sustainability (Vol. 2, pp. 134-137). TechConnect.