Experimental studies on cryogenic recycling of printed circuit board

Chris Y. Yuan, Hong C. Zhang, Gregory McKenna, Carol Korzeniewski, Jianzhi Li

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32 Scopus citations


Printed circuit board (PCB) recycling is an important challenge for today's industry. This paper presents results from a study of cryogenic decomposition as a potential alternative recycling method for obsolete printed circuit board scraps. In this method liquid nitrogen is employed as a cryogen to form an environment as low as 77 K for PCB treatment. In order to test the effect of thermal stress set-up during the rapid cryogenic treatment, impact tests were used to simulate the current shredding process. The treated PCB scraps were investigated under a monocular microscope with a 200X magnitude for micro-crack effect observation. Fatigue behavior of the boards was also examined by repeating the cryogenic treatment. The experimental results, as analyzed, demonstrated no obvious support to this alternative PCB recycling method. The energy absorbed during the impact tests for the cryogenically treated boards is insignificantly different from those without the treatment.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)657-666
Number of pages10
JournalInternational Journal of Advanced Manufacturing Technology
Issue number7-8
StatePublished - Oct 2007


  • Cryogenic
  • Impact test
  • Liquid nitrogen
  • Printed circuit board
  • Recycling


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