In the present work we investigated the fates of zinc, lead, and iron present in electric arc furnace dust during thermal treatment of the dust with tetrabromobisphenol A (TBBPA) and tetrabromobisphenol A diglycidyl ether (TBBPADGE). Mixtures of these materials were compressed into pellets and heated in a laboratory-scale furnace at 550. °C for 80. min, under oxidizing and inert conditions.The solid, condensed, and gaseous-phase products were characterized using an array of analytical methods: scanning electron microscopy, X-ray diffraction, electron probe microscopy, inductively coupled plasma, ion chromatography, and gas chromatography.The results indicated that heating the mixtures under specific conditions enabled high separation of zinc and lead from iron-rich residues, by a bromination-evaporation process. In the case of TBBPADGE, a maximum of 85% of zinc and 81% of lead were effectively separated under the above conditions.The process is based on the reaction between the highly reactive HBr gas evolved during thermal degradation of the flame-retarded materials with zinc (ZnO and ZnFe2O4) and lead in the dust, followed by complete evaporation of the formed metallic bromides from the solid residue.
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