U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

Dot gov

Official websites use .gov
A .gov website belongs to an official government organization in the United States.


Secure .gov websites use HTTPS
A lock ( ) or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .gov website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.


Main content area

E-LCA of Two Microwave Absorbers Obtained from Slag of Copper Primary Production

Elisabetta Zerazion, Martina Pini, Consuelo Mugoni, Cristina Siligardi, Paolo Veronesi, Anna Maria Ferrari
Waste and biomass valorization 2019 v.10 no.3 pp. 733-745
ceramics, copper, decision making, environmental assessment, environmental impact, environmental performance, life cycle assessment, melting, primary productivity, raw materials, silicon carbide, slags, waste reduction
PURPOSE: This research investigates the environmental performance of two products obtained using slag derived from copper primary production (copper slag, CS). The first is a tile produced as a traditional stoneware ceramic plate (CS tile) and the second product is a glass–ceramic sample obtained by melt quenching method (CS bulk sample). The products are intended for use in industrial plants as auxiliary heating elements aimed at absorbing microwave. METHODS: The environmental assessment was carried out using LCA methodology, and the obtained outcomes were compared to the results calculated for a traditional tile containing silicon carbide (SiC tile). RESULTS: The analyses show that the innovative products have an environmental load of 74% for the CS tile and 54% for the CS bulk sample lower than the environmental impact calculated for the traditional SiC-based material tile. The latter presents a high environmental load due to the incidence on the total impact of the raw materials production. In fact, LCA analysis proves that copper slag production has an impact of 96% lower with respect to the SiC production. CONCLUSIONS: This study identifies a possible waste reduction strategy in accordance with the European end-of-waste criteria, but these results should be supported by a site analysis in order to provide an appropriate context for decision making.