Title of Invention

A TREATING METHOD OF USED HOME ELECTRONIC APPLIANCES TO OBTAIN RECYCLABLE MATERIALS

Abstract In a treating method of used home electronic appliances and the like for disassembling the used home electronic appliances and the like including any one of a refrigerator, a washing machine, an air conditioner and a television set so as to pick up recyclable raw materials, the method has a step of picking up parts constructed by metals including any one of an iron, a copper and an aluminum and arranged as a lump and plastics parts per kinds from the home electronic appliances and the like, a step of sorting a casing of the home electronic appliances and the like formed by bonding a portion made of the metals and a portion made of the plastics into the kind of the plastics or the metals made of the different raw materials, and a step of crushing each of the raw materials obtained in this step to a predetermined magnitude or less so as to recover as the raw material.
Full Text - 1 -
FIELD OF THE INVENTION
The present invention relates to a method of treating for disassembling home electronic appliances and the like such as a refrigerator, a washing machine, an air conditioner, a television set and the like corresponding to used products so as to reuse as the other members, and more particularly to a method of recovering members serving as resources from the used home electronic appliances and the like.
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
As a technique of treating for recycling the home electronic appliances and the like such as the refrigerator, the washing machine, the air conditioner, the television set and the like corresponding to the used products, there has been conventionally known a method of detaching parts from these home electronic appliances and the like so as to sort per parts, and further sorting elements obtained by crushing the remaining portions such as casings and the like. In other words, the method picks up functional parts mounted to inner portions of the home electronic appliances and the like in a state of being coupled to the other portions so as to achieve a performance as one lump, for example, a motor, a compressor, a heat

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exchanger and the like mounted on the home electronic appliances and the like mentioned above, from a main body of the home electronic appliances and the like mentioned above, and picks up parts such as a glass and the like in the parts constructing the home electronic appliances and the like. Next, the method crushes the remaining portions including the casing of the home electronic appliances and the like, and sorts and recovers an iron, a nonferrous (a copper and an aluminum), a plastic and the like from the crushed pieces on the basis of a combination of a magnetic force, an eddy current, a wind force and the like.
Further, in the parts detached from the main body, since a vegetable box and shelves of the refrigerator, an upper lid and a washing tub of the washing machine, a casing of the air conditioner, a casing of the television set and the like are made of a resin material (plastics), they are disassembled, sorted and recovered per kinds of plastics, and are thereafter separately crushed so as to be grain refined.
An example of the prior art mentioned above is disclosed in Japanese Patent No. 3206586 (refer to patent document 1) and "OPERATION PERFORMANCE AND IMPACT OF HOME ELECTRONIC APPLIANCES RECYCLE FACILITY" issued by Dielectric and Insulating Material Seminar (Environment Corresponding Electric and Electronic Material and System), Japanese Electro-technical Committee, January 8, 2003, Report No. DEI-03-3 (refer

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to non-patent document 1). In these prior arts, the structure is made such as to pick up the parts such as the motor, the compressor and the like or installed parts such as a cover, a drawer and the like from the home electronic appliances and the like so as to disassemble, and put the non-disassembled casing in a crushing machine as it is so as to mechanically crush. The raw materials such as the iron, the copper, the aluminum, the plastic and the like are included in the crushed material of the casing. Accordingly, the crushed material is sorted by a mechanical sorting apparatus utilizing the magnetic force, the eddy current, the wind force and the like, and are recovered per the raw material such as the iron, the copper, the aluminum, the plastic and the like. Further, the treatment mentioned above is constituted by a first stage of manually disassembling into the parts, a second stage of mechanically crushing and a third stage of sorting the raw materials.
In the prior art mentioned above, the
disassembled functional parts such as the casing, the motor, the compressor and the like are not disassembled finely per the raw materials constructing them. In particular, since the casing is crushed as it is into the crushed pieces in which a plurality of raw materials are mixed, it is impossible to recover the plastics constituted by the iron, the nonferrous, and plural kinds of materials per the respective raw

- 4 -materials at a high purity.
Further, particularly in the treatment of the refrigerator, the compressor, the resin vegetable box, the shelf boards and the like are detached, and the remaining casing is entirely put in the crushing machine so as to be crushed. The casing of the refrigerator is structured by filling a heat insulating member made of polyurethane resin expanded by a gas having a high heat insulating performance such as a Freon or the like between a container called as an outer box in which an outer side is made of metal or resin, and an inner box made of resin such as an ABS or the like which is arranged in an inner side of the outer box and in which the container and the shelf boards are installed. In the prior art, the casing mentioned above is crushed while keeping the structure mentioned above, the heat insulating polyurethane pieces having a small specific gravity is sorted by the wind force, and the iron, the nonferrous and the plastic corresponding to the remaining propellant fouling are sequentially recovered per the raw material by the mechanical sorting apparatus utilizing the magnetic force, the eddy current and the like. In the prior art, the casing is crushed in the same manner in the other items of goods.
This prior art has the following problems. (1) The polyurethane corresponding to the heat insulating member having the small specific gravity is

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recovered for the most part, however, is not recovered partly. (2) Since the outer box and the inner box having the large specific gravity are mixed by crushing, it is hard to sort them at a high purity. In response to the problem mentioned above, there is a method of sorting the floating propylene crushed pieces and the sinking ABS crushed pieces by putting the crushed pieces into a water tank on the basis of a specific gravity difference. However, this technique has a problem that a waste water treatment equipment and a waste water treatment cost are increased due to use of the water. Further, as a method of using no water, there is a method of sorting the plastic crushed pieces per kinds by utilizing a characteristic of a static electricity, however, since impurities such as the small polyurethane lumps and powders, metals (including lead) and the like which are not sorted are included, there is a problem that a purity of the raw material after being sorted and recovered becomes low, while including the former technique.
Further, the prior art mentioned above can not remove deleterious materials such as lead ingredient, mercury ingredient, asbestos, combustibles and the like which are included in the casing and the parts in the crushing of the second stage. For example, there is a problem that if the motor and the compressor are crushed as they are, it is impossible to remove the deleterious materials included in the motor and the

- 6 -compressor.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION
An object of the present invention is to provide a treating method of used home electronic appliances and the like capable of recovering raw materials having a higher purity by disassembling a whole of a casing, a motor and a compressor. Further, the other object is to provide a treating method of used home electronic appliances and the like in which an efficiency of removing deleterious materials is improved.
MEANS FOR SOLVING THE PROBLEM
The object mentioned above can be achieved by a treating method of used home electronic appliances and the like for disassembling the used home electronic appliances and the like including any one of a refrigerator, a washing machine, an air conditioner and a television set so as to pick up recyclable raw materials, comprising:
a step of picking up parts constructed by metals including any one of an iron, a copper and an aluminum and arranged as a lump and plastics parts per kinds from the home electronic appliances and the like;
a step of sorting a casing of the home
electronic appliances and the like formed by bonding a portion made of the metals and a portion made of the

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plastics into the kind of the plastics or the metals; and
a step of crushing each of the raw materials obtained in this step to a predetermined magnitude or less so as to recover as the raw material.
Further, the object can be achieved by a treating method of home electronic appliances and the like comprising:
a step of separating parts detachable as a lump including a compressor of a refrigerator;
a step of disassembling the separated compressor into parts so as to sort these parts into kinds of metals including an iron, a copper and an aluminum constructing these parts;
a step of disassembling a casing of the
refrigerator into a metal plate member in an outer side thereof, a plastic plate member in an inner side thereof and a resin heat insulating material filled between these members and bonding the both so as to sort into the metal member, the plastic member or the resin member; and
a step of crushing each of the metal member and the plastic member or the resin member to a predetermined magnitude or less so as to recover as a recyclable raw material.
Further, the object can be achieved by
sorting the raw material obtained by crushing into the iron and a mixture of the copper and the aluminum or

the plastics by using a magnetic force sorting machine and/or an eddy current sorting machine so as to recover. Further, the object can be achieved by a structure in which the raw material obtained after being crushed is constituted by the iron equal to or less than 70 mm, and the plastics equal to or less than 7 mm.
Further, the object can be achieved by cutting out a portion constructing each of surfaces of the casing of the refrigerator corresponding to a box body provided with an approximately rectangular parallelepiped shape, and thereafter picking up a metal plate member in an outer side, a plastic plate member in an inner side and a resin heat insulating material therebetween or a cooling medium piping embedded within the heat insulating material from the cut-out portion.
In accordance with the present invention, the method disassembles into the parts or the casing in the first stage, thereafter sorts and recovers per the raw materials such as the iron, the copper, the aluminum, the plastics and the like included in the casing or the parts, in the second stage, and simultaneously removes the deleterious material such as the lead ingredient, the mercury ingredient, the asbestos, the combustibles and the like. Further, the method crushes per the sorted and recovered raw materials in the third stage. Accordingly, not only a purity and a quality of the recovered raw material are improved, but also the deleterious material is simultaneously removed so as to

- 9 -suppress an environmental pollution.
Particularly, in the refrigerator, since it is possible to individually recover the iron plate of the box in the outer side, the ABS in the inner side, and the polyurethane existing therebetween and expanded by the gas such as the Freon or the like, constituting the casing, it is possible to obtain the iron, the ABS, and the polyurethane at a high purity and a high quality. In the case that the disassembly is executed by a manual work, the Freon is included in the peeled polyurethane lump. Accordingly, the Freon is decomposed by burning the peeled polyurethane resin, or the Freon is recovered by crushing the peeled polyurethane resin so as to radiate the Freon. The recovering method is executed by an activated carbon adsorption apparatus.
In accordance with the present invention, since a transport cost of the used home electronic appliances and the like can be reduced while disassembling the used home electronic appliances and the like and increasing the purity per the raw material, there can be obtained an effect of economically treating the used home electronic appliances and the like.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS
Fig. 1 is a view showing an outline of an embodiment of a treating method of used home electronic

- 10 -appliances and the like;
Fig. 2 is a view showing a flow of a treatment of a Braun tube;
Fig. 3 is a view showing an outline of a modified embodiment of the treating method of used home electronic appliances and the like; and
Figs. 4A to 4E are views respectively showing an outline of a procedure of disassembling raw materials of a refrigerator, a washing machine, an air conditioner, a television set and a refrigerator casing.
DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION
The present invention is provided with a structure of disassembling into parts in a first stage, sorting per raw materials or removing a deleterious material in a second stage, and crushing per the raw material so as to process to a shape having a high quality and easily carried in a third stage.
In other words, in the first stage, the remaining casing is obtained by picking up parts such as a motor, a compressor, a clutch, a heat exchanger, a fan, an electronic circuit board and the like from used home electronic appliances and the like. In this case, the casing corresponds to a compound material structured such as to include metals and plastics. For example, a casing of a refrigerator corresponds to a box body in which an outer side is made of a material mainly constituted by an iron, and an inner side is

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made of a material mainly constituted by an ABS, and a polyurethane resin expanded by a heat insulating gas such as a Freon (HCFC11) or the like is sealed and filled between them. Further, between these boxes, a small amount of metal parts such as a power supply line, an earth line, a signal line, threads, screws, a steel pipe and the like are arranged so as to be embedded within the polyurethane resin. The power supply line, the earth line and the signal line are constructed, for example, by a copper line in a center portion and a vinyl chloride in an outer side, the threads and the screws are constituted by an iron or a stainless steel, and the steel pipe is constituted by the copper.
On the other hand, a casing of the washing machine is constituted by an iron outer box and a plastic lid member. A small amount of metal parts such as the power supply line, the earth line, the signal line, the threads, the screws and the like are arranged in the outer box, in the same manner as the refrigerator. A casing of the air conditioner has a box and a cover which are made of the metals or the plastics, and in any case, small pars made of the metal or the plastic are attached thereto in the same manner as the refrigerator and the washing machine. A casing of the television set is mainly constructed by the plastics, however, is constituted by a fire retardant plastic and an inflammable plastic, and is structured such that metal parts such as threads and screws are

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embedded in the plastic casing. Further, a metal or plastic net is used in a speaker integrally structured with the casing.
The description is given of the kinds of the products, however, different kinds of raw materials are used as the plastics. For example, there are a polypropylene, a polystyrene, a polyethylene, a polyclorinated biphenyl, a polycarbonate, an ABS, an AS and the like. Further, the parts such as the motor, the compressor, the clutch, the heat exchanger, the fan, the electronic circuit board, the power supply cord, the signal line, the earth line and the like are constructed by a plurality of small parts made of the iron, the copper, the aluminum and the plastics. Further, deleterious materials such as lead ingredient, mercury ingredient, asbestos, combustibles and the like are included in these parts. The combustibles are constituted by a liquid derived from a petroleum liquid, a combustible metal and the like.
In the second stage, the casing of the home electronic appliances and the like obtained via the first stage is disassembled, and is sorted per the raw materials so as to be recovered. In other words, the casing is disassembled and sorted into the iron, the copper, the aluminum and the plastics. As the disassembling and sorting method mentioned above, there can be considered a method of disassembling into small parts by hand. It is disassembled by hand by using a

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tool, for example, a cold chisel, a driver, a hammer and the like. The parts such as the motor, the compressor, the clutch, the heat exchanger, the fan and the like may be disassembled by a manual work by using the tool such as the cold chisel, the driver, the hammer and the like in the same manner so as to be sorted into the iron, the copper, the aluminum and the plastics and be recovered. Particularly, in the refrigerator, the metal plate member such as the iron or the like of the box body in the outer side, or the ABS plate member of the box body in the inner side is separated by being peeled, and the polyurethane resin corresponding to the heat insulating material filled between the inner and outer box bodies is recovered by being peeled. This work can be executed by the manual work by using the tool. In the second step mentioned above, the deleterious materials such as the lead ingredient, the mercury ingredient, the asbestos, the combustible material and the like are simultaneously removed in the second stage mentioned above.
In the third stage, the members such as the iron, the copper, the aluminum, the plastics and the like disassembled and sorted per the raw materials in the second stage mentioned above are put in a crushing machine, and are crushed into crushed pieces in which a shape has a predetermined magnitude or less. The metals recovered until the second stage are diverse including a plate-shaped member, a rectangular member,

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a circular member, a tubular member and the like. Since the metallic raw materials mentioned above have a dimension approximately equal to or more than 100 mm, they are put in the crushing machine so as to be crushed into crushed pieces having a dimension equal to or less than 100 mm. In this case, the parts (the plates and the like) having the shape equal to or more than 300 mm are crushed by the crushing machine, however, there is a case that the parts having the dimension equal to or less than 300 mm may be sold without being crushed.
Further, the obtained plastics are
constituted by many kinds such as a polypropylene, a polystyrene, a polyethylene, a polyclorinated biphenyl, a polycarbonate, an ABS, an AS and the like. They are put in the crushing machine per the kind of the raw material so as to be crushed into pieces having a dimension equal to or less than about 10 mm. A bulk density can be enlarged by crushing into small size member pieces such as the present invention, it is possible to increase an amount which can be loaded on a transportation means such as a container, a bed of a truck and the like, and it is possible to suppress a transportation cost. Particularly, the plastics can be used as a recycling raw material without passing through an additional crushing and working step in the later stage, by being crushed into dimension equal to or 10 mm. Further, in the third stage mentioned above,

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all of the recovered raw materials are made high quality. Further, in the crushed size is most desirably set for recycling to be equal to or less than 70 mm in the iron, and equal to or less than 7 mm in the plastics.
A description will be in detail given below of an embodiment in accordance with the present invention with reference to the accompanying drawings. Embodiment 1
Fig. 1 shows an embodiment in accordance with the present invention, and particularly shows a step of treating in such a manner as to recover a specific material member from used home electronic appliances and the like such as a used refrigerator, a used washing machine, a used air conditioner, a used television set and the like. In this embodiment, the process is constituted by a first step 10 of picking up functional parts separable as a lump so as to separate from a casing, the first step corresponding to the first stage, a second step 20 of disassembling the separated functional parts such as the compressor, the motor and the like into raw materials so as to sort, the second step corresponding to the second stage, and a third step 30 of making a size of the members small per the sorted and recovered raw material so as to achieve a high purity and a high quality, the third step corresponding to the third stage. Each of the steps will be described below.

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A description will be given below of the first step 10 in the first stage. In the present embodiment, the refrigerator, the washing machine, the air conditioner and the television set are exemplified as the home electronic appliances and the like. Figs. 4A to 4D respectively show processing procedures of the first stage of disassembling the home electronic appliances and the like into parts. Figs. 4A to 4D and 4E are tables showing parts to be detached and separated at a time of disassembling the home electronic appliances and the like and their order as an example. In these tables showing the procedure of the disassembly, a number described in an upper row in a lateral row indicates an order of the disassembling and picking-up work. Further, a part name to be worked in correspondence to the order number is described in a lower row. In the present embodiment, in this recovering work, the parts are detached by a worker on the basis of a manual work by using a tool such as a cutter, a driver, a pincher, a cold chisel, a hammer or the like.
A description will be given of a refrigerator disassembling step 11 in Fig. 1 with reference to Fig. 4A. In the refrigerator disassembling step 11, the worker separates the subject parts in accordance with the order shown in the upper row in Fig. 4A so as to recover. For example, a capacitor and an electronic circuit board are first detached from a back surface of

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the refrigerator, and copper wires such as a power supply cord, a signal line, an earth line and the like are cut so as to be separated. Next, a packing installed along a door outer peripheral edge in an inner side of a door arranged in a front surface of the refrigerator and sealing inner and outer sides of the refrigerator is detached so as to be recovered. Next, shelf boards made of glass, plastic or metal are detached so as to be recovered. Next, a single kind of container such as a plastic vegetable box or the like is recovered.
Next, a cooling medium is recovered from a copper pipe member in which the cooling medium used for a refrigeration cycle of the refrigerator flows through an inner portion. Since the cooling medium is included as a liquid within an oil reserved within the compressor of the refrigeration cycle, the cooling medium is sucked together with the oil so as to be recovered, and both are separated and sorted. The recovery of the cooling medium including the oil is executed by sticking a pin in the copper pipe through which the cooling medium circulates so as to suck, for example, in accordance with a method called as a piercing. The remaining oil from which the cooling medium is recovered is recovered. Next, the steel pipe corresponding to a pipe path for flowing the cooling medium therethrough is cut so as to be separated. In this state, the compressor is detached from the

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refrigerator main body or the casing. In this case, since the oil is left within the compressor, the oil is removed from the take-out inner portion. Further, in the case that a sound absorbing material is provided around a portion from which the compressor is detached within a machine chamber of the refrigerator casing, the sound absorbing material is recovered.
A description will be given of a washing
machine disassembling step 12 with reference to Fig. 4B. In the washing machine disassembling step 12, the worker separates the subject parts in accordance with the order shown in Fig. 4B so as to recover. First, an upper lid attached to an upper portion of a casing is detached. The upper lid is made of, for example, a single raw material plastic (polypropylene). Next, a capacitor and an electronic circuit board existing at a portion from which the upper lid is detached are separated, and copper wires such as a power supply cord, a signal line, an earth line and the like and the capacitor are detached. Further, if a balancer (a ring-shaped part in an upper portion of the washing machine) is provided, a salt water existing therein is recovered. This can be taken out by forming a hole in the balancer. Since the balancer after taking out the salt water is made of the single raw material plastic (polypropylene), the balancer is detached. Next, a flange fixed to an inner bottom of the washing machine is detached, and a double-structured washing tub is

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separated by taking out an inner washing tub and disassembling an outer washing tub from a bottom side. The plastic inner washing tub is recovered after removing a metal portion. The outer washing tub is separated after detaching a plastic bottom plate, detaching a motor from an outer side of a bottom of the outer washing tub, detaching a clutch and detaching a carrying rod fixing the outer washing tub so as to be recovered. Finally, a casing (an outer box) is recovered. The casing is structured by a metal such as an iron or the like or plastics.
A description will be given of an air
conditioner disassembling step 13 with reference to Fig. 4C. The worker detaches or separates the parts in accordance with the order shown in Fig. 4C. In this Fig. 4C, a description will be given of an outdoor unit of the air conditioner. The outdoor unit and an indoor unit are used in a state of being connected by a copper pipe, however, there is a case that they are separately carried to a treatment place. First, a copper pipe connection portion of the outdoor unit is constituted by a brass valve. A cooling medium and an oil are recovered from this portion. As a method which does not take out from the brass valve, there is a method called as a piercing, in which the cooling medium is sucked by sticking a pin in a conduit circulating the cooling medium therethrough, in the same manner as that of the refrigerator. Next, a back surface cover of a

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casing of the outdoor unit is detached, and a fan of the outdoor unit is detached. Subsequently, a motor rotating the fan is detached. Since the back surface cover of the outdoor unit is made of a plastic or a metal such as an iron or the like, they are separately recovered. Next, an electronic circuit board, a capacitor and a transformer existing in an inner portion are recovered, and copper wires such as a power supply cord, a signal line, an earth line and the like are cut so as to be recovered. Next, a heat exchanger arranged in an inner portion of the casing of the outdoor unit is separated from an inner side of the casing. Next, a sound absorbing material is arranged within the casing, it is removed and the compressor is detached. Further, the copper pipe circulating the cooling medium therethrough is cut and detached so as to be recovered. The brass valve is also recovered.
A description will be given of the indoor unit (with no table) of the air conditioner. First, a front surface cover is detached. The front surface cover is mainly constituted by a plastic (polypropylene) member. Next, a fan, a motor and a heat exchanger are detached from a casing of the indoor unit.
A description will be given of a television set disassembling step 14 with reference to Fig. 14D. In this step, the worker disassemble in accordance with an order shown in Fig. 4D. The television set in

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accordance with the present embodiment targets at a television set using a Braun tube. A casing of the television set is constituted by a front surface portion and a back surface portion. First, the back surface portion of the casing is detached. The casing is generally structured by a plastic or a wood. The plastics are crushed per kinds.
Next, an electronic circuit board within the casing is detached out of the casing so as to be separated. At this time, copper wires such as a power supply cord, a signal line, an earth line and the like are cut so as to be separated and recovered. Next, a deflection yoke existing in a rear side of the Braun tube is detached. Next, a demagnetization coil is detached, and a sound absorbing material existing in an outer side of the Braun tube is detached. Further, the Braun tube is taken out from the front surface member of the casing, and the front surface casing is recovered. In the case that a speaker is attached to the casing, it is detached. The Braun tube is separated from the casing in the manner mentioned above.
A description will be given of a step of treating a Braun tube 41 obtained in the television set disassembling step 14 mentioned above with reference to Fig. 2. A Braun tube treatment step 40 shown in this drawing first detaches an explosion proof band attached around an outer periphery of the Braun tube 41 by using an explosion proof band removing apparatus 42. The

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explosion proof band is constituted by a metal member, and is recovered as an iron 48 after being separated. After detaching the explosion proof band, a resin left on the surface of the Braun tube 41 is cut so as to be removed (not shown). Further, a paper seal attached to the surface of the Braun tube 41 is removed (not shown). Further, an electron gun 49 attached to a rear side of the Braun tube 41 is removed, and the electron gun 4 9 is recovered as a part. Next, in order to separate the Braun tube 43 with no electron gun 49 into a front surface glass (a panel glass) 46 and a back surface glass (a funnel glass) 45, both the glasses are separated after heating a boundary between both the glasses so as to apply heat, by using a glass divider 44. In the present embodiment, the worker applies a nichrome wire to the boundary or near the boundary so as to heat, and beats the boundary by the hammer, thereby separating the front surface glass 4 6 and the back surface glass 45. A metal shadow mask 47 is recovered from the Braun tube 43, and an aluminum evaporation powder attached to an inner surface of the front surface glass 4 6 is removed (not shown). In order to align the shapes of the glass members obtained by recovering into approximately 100 mm or less, the glass members are crushed in accordance with a mechanical method or a manual work, and the other materials than the glass attached to the surfaces of the front surface glass 46 and the back surface glass

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47 are mechanically removed individually, in the front surface glass 46 and the back surface glass 47.
Next, a description will be given of a second step 20 of disassembling the parts obtained in the first stage into the raw materials in the second stage, and a third step 30 of refining per the raw materials (the iron, the copper, the aluminum, the plastics and the like) obtained in the second step 20 in magnitude and making them high purity and high quality, serving as the third stage, with reference to Fig. 1.
In Fig. 1, a description will be given of a refrigerator raw material sorting step 21. In this step, the parts to be disassembled into the raw material are constituted by the compressor, the casing, the vegetable box, the shelf plates, the egg case and the like. First, a description will be given of a process of the second stage of disassembling the compressor (the part) into the raw material. The casing in an outer side of the compressor is cut by using a mechanical cutter, a plasma fusing apparatus or the like. The raw material of the casing is generally constituted by the iron, and is recovered as it is or is made smaller in shape by using the crushing machine so as to be recovered. A core of an electric motor rotating so as to rotate a compression portion compressing the cooling medium is arranged in the casing, and this core is constituted by a copper coil winding, a silicon steel plate and the like. The core

- 24 -
is disassembled so as to be sorted and separated into the copper, the silicone steel plate and the like. Both of these elements can be sold as the raw material.
A description will be given of a raw material disassembling step of the refrigerator corresponding to the step of the second stage of disassembling the parts including the casing of the refrigerator into the raw materials with reference to Fig. 4E. In the present embodiment, the worker disassembles the corresponding parts along an order of a number shown in Fig. 4E in this step. The refrigerator is structured such that the parts having different shapes are bonded or installed to the casing constructed by the metals or the plastics. Further, the casing of the refrigerator is normally formed in an approximately rectangular parallelepiped box shape, and is structured such that reserve substances to be refrigerated or frozen can be stored in an internal space of the box body. Further, the casing is structured such as to be provided with a metal box body (an outer box) constructing an outer side, a plastics box body (an inner box) arranged in an inner side of the metal box body so as to be spaced at a predetermined gap, and a resin heat insulating material filled in the space forming the gap therebetween, and the outer box and the inner box are approximately integrally bonded by the heat insulating material.
In the present embodiment, with respect to

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the refrigerator mentioned above, per one surface of the casing having the approximately rectangular parallelepiped shape, surface portions of the box body are first cut out from the casing by a cutter. The members per the cut-out surface are formed in an approximately plate shape, the plate member made of the metal such as the iron or the like is arranged in the outer side of the casing, and the plate member made of the ABS or the like is arranged in the inner side of the casing. Any one of them is peeled from the casing portion formed as the plate shape, and the polyurethane corresponding to the internal heat insulating member is peeled off from the outer or inner plate member so as to be sorted. Further, since the steel pipe corresponding to the pipe path in which the cooling medium is circulated in the inner portion is arranged between the inner and outer plate members in a state of being embedded in the polyurethane, this is detached from the plate member so as to be sorted. In the present step, the raw materials such as the iron, the copper, the ABS, the polyurethane and the like are sorted per kind from the parts constructing the casing in accordance with the manner mentioned above so as to be recovered.
A description will be given of the third step corresponding to the third stage of the process for crushing the recovered raw materials per kinds so as to make high purity and high quality with reference to Fig.

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1. The third step 30 collects metals 311, 321, 331 and 341 such as the iron, the copper, the aluminum and the like, and plastics 312, 322, 332 and 342 such as the polypropylene, the polystyrene, the polyethylene, the polyclorinated biphenyl, the polycarbonate, the ABS, the AS and the like sorted per kinds, in each of the raw materials, with respect to the home electronic appliances and the like such as the refrigerator, the washing machine, the air conditioner and the television set via the second step 20, and crushes the metals 311, 321, 331 and 341 by a metal crushing machine 350, and the plastics 312, 322, 332 and 342 by a plastic crushing machine 360.
Since many of the metals such as the iron, the copper and the aluminum obtained by disassembling and sorting these home electronic appliances and the like are formed in the plate shape, it is possible to obtain metals pieces 3501 corresponding to the crushed pieces which are crushed by the metal crushing machine 350 so as to be aligned in a magnitude equal to or less than about 100 mm. Accordingly, it is possible to make a bulk density (a weight around a volumetric capacity) heavy so as to suppress a transportation cost in the case of carrying for applying a further treatment low. Further, even in the case that the copper pipe is not crushed, the copper pipe may be crushed by the metal crushing machine 350 in the same manner as the iron so as to be aligned in the shape equal to or less than 100

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mm. In this case, it is possible to obtain the metals pieces 3501 corresponding to the metal crushed pieces in the same manner as the iron and the aluminum.
The ABS in the inner side of the casing of the refrigerator has a plate-like shape just after being disassembled from the casing so as to be sorted, however, can be crushed into flake-shaped crushed pieces having a grain size equal to or less than 10 mm by being put in the plastic crushing machine 360 so as to be crushed. It is possible to obtain the plastics pieces 3502 in the manner mentioned above. In the present embodiment, the plastic crushing machine 360 uses a crushing machine which can crush the crushed materials into a magnitude equal to or less than 10 mm. The reason of crushing the plastics finer than the metals such as the iron and the like as mentioned above is as follows. The bulk density can be enlarged so as to suppress the transportation cost low, by setting the dimension equal to or less than 10 mm, or they are easily dissolved in such a manner as to be reproduced as the ABS pellets. In this case, the ABS corresponding to the flake-shaped crushed pieces can be utilized for forming the other products.
It has been known on the basis of the study of the inventors that a magnitude of the peeled pieces of the heat insulating material such as the polyurethane or the like obtained by being peeled from the casing in the casing disassembling step of the

- 28 -
refrigerator is normally equal to or less than 100 mm. The peeled pieces of the polyurethane mentioned above are burned or combusted for dissolving the heat insulating gas such as the Freon or the like included in the inner portion at a high temperature, or are crushed so as to be recovered after radiating the heat insulating gas included in the inner portion. In the present embodiment, the peeled pieces are crushed into about 3 mm or less, preferably 0.3 mm or less, and the heat insulating gas included in the inner portion is radiated from the peeled pieces, and is recovered. The heat insulating gas can be more recovered by crushing finer. Since a density of the radiated heat insulating gas is normally low, the radiated heat insulating gas is adsorbed by an adsorption apparatus using an activated carbon or the like, and is again desorbed so as to be recovered.
In the vegetable box, the egg case and the shelf plates made of the plastics, only the vegetable box, the egg case and the shelf plates corresponding to the recovered raw material are collected and are independently put in the crushing machine 360 so as to be crushed into the magnitude equal to or less than about 10 mm. The raw material of the vegetable box is constituted, for example, by the polypropylene, and the egg case is made of a plastic called as GPPS. Many of these members are transparent or semi-transparent, and only the parts constituted by the permeable members as

- 29 -
mentioned above are sorted so as to be recovered, and are crushed into a magnitude equal to or less than about 10 mm by the crushing machine, in the same manner as the vegetable box. Further, the shelf plates are mainly constructed by a plastic called AS. Only the AS is sorted and recovered, and is crushed into a shape equal to or less than about 10 mm by the crushing machine. It is possible to obtain the plastics pieces 3502 corresponding to the crushed pieces on the basis of the crushing of the plastics mentioned above. Both of them can be used as the raw material for manufacturing the other products made of the plastics by molding. In this case, there is a case that the deleterious materials are included in the electronic circuit board which is separated in the first and second steps so as to be recovered. It is necessary to separate and recover them.
Next, a description will be given of a washing machine raw material sorting step 22 corresponding to the second step 20 in the second stage of disassembling the parts disassembled in the washing machine disassembling step 12 with respect to the washing machine into the raw materials, and a third step 30 in the third stage of crushing the disassembled materials (the iron, the copper, the aluminum and the plastics) sorted per the raw materials so as to refine and make high purity or high quality.
In the second step 20 in the second stage of

- 30 -
disassembling the motor (the part) into the raw materials, the outer casing is disassembled by the manual work in the same manner as the refrigerator raw material sorting step 21. The core constituted by the copper coil winding, the silicone steel plate and the like in the casing is disassembled into the copper and the silicone steel plate so as to be sorted. Further, the clutch is disassembled in the same manner so as to be sorted and recovered par the metal raw materials. Further, as the plastics constituting the washing machine, there are the washing machine casing (the outer box), the upper lid, the bottom plate, the washing tub and the like. In general, since the polypropylene is much used as the raw material of the washing machine, the raw materials are separately recovered. Further, the washing machine casing (the outer box) mainly made of the metal such as the iron or the like is obtained. The casing is put in the metal crushing machine 350 in the subsequent third step 30 so as to be crushed into a magnitude equal to or less than 100 mm. Further, the carrying rod and the like are crushed into the magnitude equal to or less than 100 mm in the same manner, whereby the metals 3501 is obtained. In this case, there is a case that the deleterious materials are included in the electronic circuit board. They are separated and recovered.
As the second step 20, a description will be given of an air conditioner raw material sorting step

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23 of sorting and recovering the parts obtained in the first step as the disassembled materials (the iron, the copper, the aluminum and the plastics) sorted per the raw materials, and a third step in the third stage of refining the obtained disassembled materials so as to make high purity and high quality. The air conditioner has an indoor unit and an outdoor unit, however, they are executed by the same method.
The compressor is disassembled into the raw materials in the same method as that of the refrigerator. In other words, a casing in an outer side of the compressor is cut by a mechanical cutter or a plasma fusing apparatus. The iron casing is sold as it is or is made smaller in shape by the metal crushing machine 350 so as to be sold. A core in the casing is constituted by a copper coil winding and a silicon steel plate, and they are sorted into the copper and the silicon steel plate. Further, the copper pipes corresponding to the cooling medium pipe path for supplying and circulating the cooling medium from the compressor may be sold after being separated so as to be sorted, or may be sold after being crushed by the metal crushing machine 350 so as to be aligned in shape. Further, the heat exchanger is generally constituted by the copper pipe and the aluminum thin plate, and the iron parts are partly used. These parts are disassembled per the kind of metal so as to be sorted.
Further, the fan is constituted by a vane and

- 32 -
a motor rotationally driving the vane. They are separated, and the motor is disassembled in accordance with the step described in the case of the washing machine and the raw materials are sorted. Since the vane is generally made of the plastic or the iron, they are respectively put in the plastics crushing machine 360 or the metal crushing machine 350 so as to be crushed into specific shapes, in the third step 30, after being sorted. For example, the plastics are aligned in the magnitude equal to or less than 10 mm, and the metals are crushed into the magnitude equal to or less than 100 mm. There is a case that the deleterious materials are included in the electronic circuit board. They are separated and recovered.
A description will be given of a television set raw material sorting step 24 of disassembling the parts obtained in the first step into the raw materials so as to sort into the raw materials, as the second step 20, and a third step 30 in the third stage of refining the disassembled materials (the iron, the copper, the aluminum and the plastics) sorted per the raw materials so as to make high purity and high quality. A casing (a box body) of the television set is generally constituted by a fire retardant plastic and an inflammable plastic, or a compound material of the both. After separating the casing, both of the plastics are put in the plastics crushing machine 360 together or individually so as to be crushed into the

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shape equal to or less than 10 mm, in the third step 30. Further, the separated explosion proof band is put in the metal crushing machine 350 in the third step so as to be crushed into the shape equal to or less than 100 mm. Further, the deflection yoke is constituted by a compound material of the copper, the iron and the plastic, and the electron gun is constituted by the compound material of the small parts made of the metal and the glasses. They are disassembled per the raw materials so as to be sorted by the worker in the television set raw material sorting step 24. Since the magnitudes after being separated of them are small such as 100 mm or less, it is not necessary to crush them, however, they may be crushed. In this case, there is a case that the deleterious materials are included in the electronic circuit board. These deleterious materials are separated and recovered. Embodiment 2
A description will be given of a modified embodiment of the third stage with reference to Fig. 3. In this modified embodiment, a vibration conveyor 351, and a magnetic force sorting machine 3521 or an eddy current sorting machine 3531 are installed in a rear side of the metal crushing machine 350 in the third step 30 shown in Fig. 1. In the present modified example, the crushed pieces obtained by the metal crushing machine 350 are carried by the vibration conveyor 351 and the crushed pieces and the dusts

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around them are simultaneously sucked by a duct collector 3541, whereby dusts 354 are obtained.
There is a case that the raw materials
obtained in the first stage or the second stage are not necessarily disassembled into the single raw material completely. In this case, the crushed pieces carried on the vibration conveyor 351 are sorted into the iron crushed pieces and the other crushed pieces than the iron by the magnetic force sorting machine 3521 arranged in the rear side of the metal crushing machine 350. Next, the crushed pieces from which the iron crushed pieces are separated are carried to further the rear side by the vibration conveyor 351 or the like and thereafter put in the eddy current sorting machine 3531, and the copper or the aluminum pieces 3503 are sorted from the crushed pieces, and they are recovered. The copper or the aluminum or the mixture thereof is sorted in the eddy current sorting machine 3531 in the manner mentioned above, and a propellant fouling thereafter output from an outlet of the eddy current sorting machine 3531 is mainly formed as small plastics 3502. In the same manner, a magnetic force sorting machine 3522 or an eddy current sorting machine 3523 is installed in a rear side of the plastic crushing machine 360, and the crushed pieces obtained from the plastic crushing machine 360 are put in accordance with this order. The iron crushed pieces sorted by the magnetic force sorting machine 3521 are mixed with the

- 35 -
iron crushed pieces sorted by the magnetic force sorting machine 3521 so as to be recovered as the iron pieces 3504. Further, they are sorted into a mixture 3503 of the copper and the aluminum separated from the plastics crushed pieces and plastics pieces 3502 so as to be recovered.
In the case that it takes a too long time for the worker to disassemble the compound materials constituted by the iron, the copper, the aluminum and the plastics, this modified embodiment can automatically sort and recover in the rear side of the metal crushing machine 350 and the plastic crushing machine 360, and it is possible to obtain an effect of shortening a working time, improving an efficiency and lowering a cost. In other words, there can be obtained an effect that the raw material recovery materials can be made higher quality and higher purity then the embodiment in Fig. 1.
The embodiment mentioned above shows the technique of recovering the high-purity raw materials by exemplifying the refrigerator, the washing machine, the air conditioner and the television set, however, this technique can be applied to the other electronic and electric products. The electronic and electric products mean devices constituted by the metals, the plastics and the electronic circuits. For example, in home electric appliances such as a sweeper, a microwave oven, a plasma television set, a liquid crystal

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television set, an electric fan and the like, IT devices such as a personal computer, a CRT, a server, an uninterruptible power source, a hub device and the like, office machines such as a copying machine, a facsimile and the like, medical instruments such as an electrocardiogram, an ultrasonic diagnostic equipment, an NMR apparatus and the like, measuring devices such as various chromatography analytical instruments, optical measuring devices, a flow meter, a weight meter, a voltage meter, a current meter and the like, machine tools such as a lawn mower, an electric screwdriver and the like, industrial electric products such as a controlling computer, a power supply board, a control board, a relay board, a regulator, a thermostat and the like, electronic toys such as an electronic game machine and the like, acoustical instruments such as an audio CD reproducing device, a speaker and the like, vending machines such as a drinking water vending machine and the like, it is possible to efficiently disassemble so as to recover the raw materials having the high purity from the used one.

- 37 -CLAIMS:
1. A treating method of used home electronic
appliances and the like for disassembling the used home
electronic appliances and the like including any one of
a refrigerator, a washing machine, an air conditioner
and a television set so as to pick up recyclable raw
materials per kinds, comprising:
a step of picking up metals parts constructed by metals including any one of an iron, a copper and an aluminum and arranged as a lump and plastics parts from the home electronic appliances and the like;
a step of sorting a casing of the home
electronic appliances and the like formed by bonding a portion made of the metals and a portion made of the plastics into the metals or the plastics per the raw materials by a manual work; and
a step of mechanically crushing each of the raw materials obtained in this step per kinds to a predetermined magnitude or less so as to recover as the recyclable raw material.
2. A treating method of home electronic
appliances and the like comprising:
a step of separating parts detachable as a lump including a compressor of a refrigerator;
a step of disassembling the separated
compressor into constituting parts so as to sort these parts into kinds of metals including an iron, a copper and an aluminum constructing these parts;

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a step of disassembling a casing of the
refrigerator into a metal plate member in an outer side thereof, a plastic plate member in an inner side thereof and a resin heat insulating material filled between these members and bonding the both so as to sort into the metal member, the plastic member or the resin member per kinds; and
a step of crushing each of the metal member and the plastic member or the resin member per kinds to a predetermined magnitude or less so as to recover as a recyclable raw material per kinds.
3. A treating method of home electronic
appliances and the like as claimed in claim 1 or 2,
further comprising a step of sorting the raw material
obtained by crushing into the iron and a mixture of the
copper and the aluminum or the plastics per kinds by
using at least one of a magnetic force sorting machine
and an eddy current sorting machine so as to recover.
4. A treating method of home electronic
appliances and the like as claimed in claim 3, wherein
a magnitude of the raw material obtained by crushing is
constituted by the iron equal to or less than 70 mm,
and the plastics equal to or less than 7 mm.
5. A treating method of home electronic
appliances and the like as claimed in claim 2, further
comprising a step of cutting out a portion constructing
each of surfaces of the casing of the refrigerator
corresponding to a box body provided with an

- 39 -
approximately rectangular parallelepiped shape, and thereafter picking up a metal plate member in an outer side, a plastic plate member in an inner side and a resin heat insulating material therebetween and a cooling medium piping embedded within the heat insulating material from the cut-out portion.

In a treating method of used home electronic appliances and the like for disassembling the used home electronic appliances and the like including any one of a refrigerator, a washing machine, an air conditioner and a television set so as to pick up recyclable raw materials, the method has a step of picking up parts constructed by metals including any one of an iron, a copper and an aluminum and arranged as a lump and plastics parts per kinds from the home electronic appliances and the like, a step of sorting a casing of the home electronic appliances and the like formed by bonding a portion made of the metals and a portion made of the plastics into the kind of the plastics or the metals made of the different raw materials, and a step of crushing each of the raw materials obtained in this step to a predetermined magnitude or less so as to recover as the raw material.

Documents:

00058-kol-2007 correspondence-1.1.pdf

00058-kol-2007 correspondence-1.3.pdf

00058-kol-2007 form-18.pdf

00058-kol-2007 priority document othes.pdf

00058-kol-2007 priority document.pdf

0058-kol-2007 correspondence-1.2.pdf

0058-kol-2007 others document.pdf

0058-kol-2007 p.a.pdf

0058-kol-2007-abstract.pdf

0058-kol-2007-claims.pdf

0058-kol-2007-correspondence others.pdf

0058-kol-2007-description (complete).pdf

0058-kol-2007-drawings.pdf

0058-kol-2007-form1.pdf

0058-kol-2007-form2.pdf

0058-kol-2007-form3.pdf

0058-kol-2007-form5.pdf

58-KOL-2007-ABSTRACT-1.1.pdf

58-KOL-2007-ABSTRACT.pdf

58-KOL-2007-CLAIMS-1.1.pdf

58-KOL-2007-CLAIMS.pdf

58-KOL-2007-CORRESPONDENCE OTHERS 1.4.pdf

58-KOL-2007-DESCRIPTION COMPLATE.pdf

58-KOL-2007-DRAWINGS.pdf

58-KOL-2007-FORM 1.pdf

58-KOL-2007-FORM 2.pdf

58-KOL-2007-FORM-27.pdf

58-KOL-2007-OTHERS 1.1.pdf

58-KOL-2007-REPLY TO EXAMINATION REPORT.pdf

abstract-00058-kol-2007.jpg


Patent Number 235758
Indian Patent Application Number 58/KOL/2007
PG Journal Number 06/2010
Publication Date 05-Feb-2010
Grant Date 03-Feb-2010
Date of Filing 16-Jan-2007
Name of Patentee HITACHI PLANT TECHNOLOGIES LTD.
Applicant Address 1-14, UCHIKANDA 1-CHOME, CHIYODA-KU, TOKYO
Inventors:
# Inventor's Name Inventor's Address
1 KENJI BABA C/O HITACHI LTD., INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY GROUP, 12TH FLOOR, MARUNOUCHI CENTER BUILDING, 6-1, MARUNOUCHI 1-CHOME, CHIYODA-KU, TOKYO 100-8220
2 TAKESHI NEMOTO C/O HITACHI LTD., INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY GROUP, 12TH FLOOR, MARUNOUCHI CENTER BUILDING, 6-1, MARUNOUCHI 1-CHOME, CHIYODA-KU, TOKYO 100-8220
PCT International Classification Number G06Q10/00
PCT International Application Number N/A
PCT International Filing date
PCT Conventions:
# PCT Application Number Date of Convention Priority Country
1 2006-151676 2006-05-31 Japan