As part of the NWE-REGENERATIS project funded by Interreg Northwest Europe, an exchange of experts took place on March 16, 2023 at the :metabolon research site in Lindlar.
The main focus is to increase the reuse of raw materials from past metallurgical sites and deposits. In Northwest Europe alone there are more than 100,000 polluted sites from the metalworking industry from which valuable metals can be recovered. However, this requires the latest sorting techniques.
At the :metabolon site, the experts had the opportunity to see one of the most modern sorting plants for ash from waste incineration. The plant operated by Refer GmbH is state-of-the-art and enables metal recovery down to a particle size of less than 3 mm. This technology, used in waste management, can also be used for metal recovery when remediating past metallurgical sites and deposits. This will save primary resources in the future. Unfortunately, there is currently no uniform European database on the resource recovery potential from such sites.
Therefore, the REGENERATIS methodology was presented, with which a uniform data structure is developed and a cost-effective assessment of potential is made possible using decision-making tools and non-invasive geophysical measurements. With the help of artificial intelligence (SMARTIX), the technological feasibility and economic potential are evaluated so that decision makers have a well-founded decision making basis for the remediation of past metallurgical sites and deposits. The NWE-REGENERATIS project will run until September 2023 and will make an important contribution to innovative raw material cycles and the reduction of environmental risks and project costs for the remediation of past metallurgical sites.