Nickelrückgewinnung aus Abwässern der Mikroelektronikindustrie

Translated title of the contribution: Nickel recovery from wastewater of the microelectronics industry

Valentin Pichlhöfer

Research output: ThesisMaster's Thesis


The recovery of important resources represents an essential goal for innovative, environmentally conscious companies that contributes to a sustainable development. This thesis deals with the recovery of nickel from waste waters of the printed circuit board and substrate production. To obtain a rough plant concept, the suitability of ion exchange processes for the pre-processing of nickel-containing waste waters is examined. The focus lies on the selection of an exchange resin that is able to produce a usable starting product for further process steps and ensures compliance with the legal limit values for waste water emissions. As the last recovery step a membrane electrolysis, in which the metallic deposition of nickel from the ion exchange regenerates takes place, is tested. For that a comparison of the current efficiency between hydrochloric and sulphuric acid containing regenerants used as electrolytes is conducted. While ion exchangers are suitable to produce electroplatable solutions, membrane electrolysis shows low current yields of max. 63% and inadequate product qualities due to reduced adhesion to the cathodes. Under the conditions tested, a pH of 5 and a temperature of 40°C prove to be the most energy efficient when using sulphate electrolytes. In ion exchange, weakly acidic, complex-forming resins have a high capacity for nickel, and in the conditioned state they reach the limit values for discharge.
Translated title of the contributionNickel recovery from wastewater of the microelectronics industry
Original languageGerman
Awarding Institution
  • Montanuniversität
  • Antrekowitsch, Helmut, Supervisor (internal)
Award date20 Oct 2023
Publication statusPublished - 2023

Bibliographical note

embargoed until 28-08-2028


  • Nickel recovery
  • ion exchange processes
  • membrane electrolysis
  • wastewater cleaning

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