Ionic liquid based PGM extraction from autocatalyst and separation

TU Wien has developed an innovative PGM extraction and separation techniques within the PLATIRUS project.

The innovation refers to a dual ionic liquid-based extraction and separation process, allowing to leach PGM from spent autocatalysts and other input materials using hydrophilic and low-costs choline-based ionic liquids. The process further includes a separation step with a second hydrophobic ionic liquid, either via liquid-liquid extraction or via solid-liquid extraction as supported hydrophobic ionic liquid phase. This separation enables a pre-concentration of PGMs in the hydrophobic ionic liquid and recovers the hydrophilic ionic liquids which can be recycled for further leaching.

The innovative process has the following advantages:

  • fast process
  • low temperature / mid conditions
  • environment benign