Recycling of used Lead-Acid Batteries and its environmental concerns



3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10.

Introduction Why Lead recycling? Sources of Lead waste. List of raw materials and machinery. Main Lead Recycling Process. Sources of air pollution. Pollution control system with their details. Solid Waste Management. Other Control Technologies for Air Emissions. Occupational Safety Health Standards.


Lead is the 4th most widely used Metal on earth.
Lead has highest rate of recycling among all Ferrous & Non-Ferrous Metals. Lead is the only metal on earth which retains its 100% Chemical & Physical properties, irrespective of any number of recycling.


4. Worldwide production of recycled Lead is now about 3

times more than producing Prime Lead.


Lead Battery Scrap is a Hazardous waste and unsafe disposal creates heavy Environmental / Health problems.

2. Careful Recycling is :
  

essential beneficial cost effective in comparison to treatment & disposal cost.

3. Emissions during Recycling can be fully controlled by

effective Pollution Control Equipments.

Advantages :
1. Conservation of ore resources and fuels.

2. Lower energy consumption.
3. Solution to hazardous waste disposal problem. 4. Lower emission of noxious and green house gases.

Sources of Lead Waste Generation
 Used lead acid batteries
 rejected materials from battery manufacturing

industries  slag from smelters  used lead anode sheets from zinc producing units.  lead scrap from printing press and lead pipes etc.

 Lead can be recovered by either separating the different

materials that make up the battery (Lead, plastics, acid, etc.) prior to metallurgical processing.
 Then it is processed as a whole through heat treatment with metals being recovered at the end.


 Industrial data:
 Requirement of Raw Materials:

Old battery/ lead scrap



 Installed production capacity:

Hard and soft lead and lead alloy :
 List of Plant and Machinery:


Coal fired furnace 2. Blower (centrifugal) with 5 Hp motor 3. Moulds 4. Air pollution control system


1 No. 1 No. 10 Nos. 1 set

Main Stages of Lead Recycling Process:
1. Battery cutting section. 2. Lead Smelting section 3. Pollution control system.

1.Lead acid battery Scrap from repair workshop , scrap
car bodies

Battery Cutting/Crushing
Plate scraps are segregated and used as a raw material for smelting

2. Furnace is filled with coal and fire is lit to the coal, air
is supplied by air blower.

After a sustained fire is established , lead scrap will be fed into coal fired furnace and melted.

Coal fired Furnace:
 The coal fired Furnace is a very flexible and universal equipment

used for recycling many non-ferrous metals. It has certain distinct characteristics such as:
 Low project capital cost
 Low energy cost  Easy to install

 Easy to operate and maintain
 Plates & powder from scrap battery as well as slag from Furnace

can be used as raw material  Generates high Pollution both as Flue Gases & Fugitive Emissions.

When enough lead has accumulated, it is tapped into a mobile ladle and transported in liquid stage to the moulds.

 The product of the

smelting operation is crude lead, which needs subsequent refining.

 3.From the furnace the
hot gases pass through a air cooling room and cyclone where most of the coarse dust particles are separated from the gas stream.


coal fired furnace.

2. it was found that apart from the carbon particles , certain

amount of lead dust also escapes from the furnace.

The study reveals that the suspended particulate matter (SPM) and lead exceeds the standard values prescribed by the Central Pollution Control Board.

Pollutants and its characteristics:
 The main parameters to be controlled are as follows:

2. 3. 4. 5.

Suspended Particulate Matter(SPM). Sulphur dioxide (SO2). Carbon dioxide (CO2). Nitrogen dioxide (NO2) Lead dust particles (Pb).

Pollution Control
 The most critical part of ‘Lead Recycling Operation’ is Air

Pollution Control.
 The plant is specifically designed to meet specific norms

and environmental standards in terms of :
 Ambient Air Standard
 Stack Emission Standard  Solid Waste Disposal Limits  Noise Levels  Occupational Exposure.

The main purpose of the control devices is:
To clean and de-dust the flue gas containing :  chemical components  lead dust particles

that are generated in the process of smelting operation, before it is released to the atmosphere.

Air pollution control system

for lead smelting unit:

Air cooling room made of red brick of size 150 X 150 X 200 cm: 1 No. 2. Cyclone separator ( 90cm dia X 90cm ht) With 120 cm deep conical hopper made of M.S : 1 No.

3. Bag filter house  Dimension  Construction  Bag type  Bag diameter  Bag height  No. of bags  Dust removal  Dust collection  Inlet diameter -

: 1 No. 1405 X 930 X 2290 M.S. Polyester 150 mm 1125 mm 60 Shaking lever Dust tray 300 mm

4. Air blower (centrifugal type) with 5 Hp motor (1440 RPM, 3phase)

: 1 No

5. M.S chimney of 300mm diameter , height 15000mm

: 1 No

 Details of Equipments along with Functions: 1. AIR COOLING ROOM:  It receives very hot gases from Furnace. 2. Duct & Bends: 

to convey flue gases from point of suction to final top of the chimney and connect various equipments like air cooling room,cyclone, bag house, blower and chimney. All bends have provision of manhole cleaning mechanism.

3. Cyclone dust collector:

prefiltering process.

the dust gas stream enters at an angle and is spun rapidly.
The centrifugal force (circular flow) throws the dust particles toward the wall of the cyclone. these particles fall into a hopper located underneath.


The general principle of inertia separation is that the particulateladen gas is forced to change direction. As gas changes direction, the inertia of the particles causes them to continue in the original direction and be separated from the gas stream. The walls of the cyclone narrow toward the bottom of the unit, allowing the particles to be collected in a hopper. The cleaner air leaves the cyclone through the top of the chamber, flowing upward in a spiral vortex, formed within a downward moving spiral. Cyclones are efficient in removing large particles but are not as efficient with smaller particles. For this reason, they are used with other particulate control devices.

 Particles get collected in a hopper.

 The cleaner air leaves through the top flowing upward in a

spiral vortex.

4. Bag Filters
 The fabric filter is efficient at removing fine particles

and can exceed efficiencies of 99 percent .


The selection of the fiber material is important to baghouse performance.

2. The fiber material must have adequate strength

characteristics based upon:

max. gas temp. expected adequate chemical compatibility with both the gas and the collected dust.

3. One disadvantage:

high-temperature gases often have to be cooled before contacting the filter medium.

5. BLOWER:  provides necessary driving force to convey flue gases from top of bag house to top of the chimney.  horse power provided by suitable motor. 6. Stack (Chimney)  The generated gases are passed into atmosphere after treatment through chimney of suitable height and diameter. 7. Moulds:  are collection trolleys used for collecting molten lead from coal fired Furnaces. They can be of varying capacities, ranging from 25 Kg to 30 Kg.

Characteristics of Air Pollution generated in Furnace  Dust : 8000-10000 mg/m3  Temperature : 280-300o C  Gases : Traces of NOx and SO2
Discharge Characteristics required as per Norms  Dust : Less than 50 mg / m3  Lead (Pb) : Less than 10 mg / m3  Temperature : 60-90o C  Gases : Traces of NOx and SO2

Solid waste management :
 conversion of the discard Slag and other process

wastes to marketable / safely disposable forms.
 selection and design of in-plant hazardous material

storage facilities and disposal landfill sites.

Other Control Technologies for Air Emissions:
 Enclose part or all the process area.  Keep ore / raw material damp, where possible.

 Utilize wet spray suppression systems.
 Wet and cover truck loads and stored concentrates.  Enclose transfer points, equipment and the truck

loading operation.  maintenance on machinery to minimize leaks/leakages.

Occupational Safety Health Standards:
 Proper plant design and engineering controls in order to

protect workers.
 Required education & training to workforce.  Regular environmental monitoring of Air Lead Levels .  Advance planning of steps to be taken in case of crossing

of prescribed action levels.

Bag filter house :


Cyclone seperator:

Lead Acid Battery Scrap Recycling is essential for mankind as well as for Industry survival.

 Thanks !!

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