Luigi Toro

Luigi Toro
Eco Recycling Srl

Full Professor

About

170
Publications
34,457
Reads
How we measure 'reads'
A 'read' is counted each time someone views a publication summary (such as the title, abstract, and list of authors), clicks on a figure, or views or downloads the full-text. Learn more
4,658
Citations
Additional affiliations
November 1996 - present
Sapienza University of Rome
Position
  • Director of the High Tech Recycling InterUniversity Centre
November 1996 - present
Sapienza University of Rome
Position
  • Professor
June 1986 - October 1996
Università degli Studi dell'Aquila
Position
  • Professor

Publications

Publications (170)
Article
Full-text available
The aim of the present work is the recycling treatment of tubular α-Al2O3-supported ceramic membranes with a Pd/Ag selective layer, employed in hydrogen production with integrated CO2 capture. A nitric acid leaching treatment was investigated, and recovered ceramic supports were characterized, demonstrating their suitability for the production of n...
Article
Full-text available
Photovoltaic panels were included in EU Directive as WEEE (Wastes of Electric and Electronic Equipment) requiring the implementation of dedicated collection schemes and end-of-life treatment ensuring targets in terms of recycling rate (80%) and recovery rate (85%). Photovoltaic panels are mainly made up of high-quality solar glass (70–90%), but als...
Article
Full-text available
Li primary batteries are currently treated along with other Li batteries in several big pyro- metallurgical plants in Northern EU countries. Nevertheless, pyro-metallurgical processes do not allow for Mn and Li recycling and present negative environmental impacts, on the other hand hydrometallurgical processing can potentially ensure the integral r...
Article
End of life photovoltaic panels of different technologies (poly crystalline Si, amorphous Si, and CdTe) were treated mechanically in pilot scale by single shaft shredder minimizing the production of fine fractions below 0.4 mm (<18% weight). Grounded material was sieved giving: an intermediate fraction (0.4-1 mm) of directly recoverable glass (18%...
Article
Full-text available
Microalgae are a promising feedstock for the future of the industrial chemistry. Among microalgae, Tetradesmus obliquus (generally known as Scenedesmus obliquus) is one of the most studied species due to its robustness and its good performances for production of lipids, proteins and carbohydrates. However, the high production costs still limit larg...
Article
A fed-batch strategy is proposed to produce microalgae biomass under non-axenic heterotrophic conditions. The strategy induces the alternation of N-deplete (Glucose-replete) and N-replete (Glucose-deplete) cultivation phases by the periodic and uncoupled supply of glucose and NO3- to the culture. Cultivation of the microalga T. obliquus with this s...
Article
Full-text available
Microalgal productivity under changing conditions of light intensity and temperature is a crucial parameter for evaluating profitability and sustainability of an outdoor cultivation in cylindrical photobioreactors. The control of the principal outdoor variables, even for the more accurate systems, is subject to a wide number of factors that might i...
Article
Full-text available
Olive mill wastewater (OMW) utilization for microalgae cultivation has been investigated in different studies, in which it is generally strongly pre-treated before use. Here a common pre-treatment method (active carbon) has been carried out for OMW, and its influence on Tetradesmus obliquus growth (generally known as Scenedesmus obliquus) and pheno...
Article
Full-text available
Microalgae are photoautotrophic microorganisms that can produce energy both by using sunlight, water and CO2 (phototrophic metabolism) and by using organic sources such as glucose (heterotrophic metabolism). Heterotrophic growth is a key factor in microalgae research, due to its increased productivity and the lower capital and operative costs compa...
Article
Experimental results of leaching tests using waste fractions obtained by mechanical pretreatment of lithium ion batteries (LIB) were reported. Two physical pretreatments were performed at pilot scale in order to recover electrodic powders: the first including crushing, milling, and sieving and the second granulation, and sieving. Recovery yield of...
Article
Full-text available
Different kinds of panels (Si-based panels and CdTe panels) were treated according to a common process route made up of two main steps: a physical treatment (triple crushing and thermal treatment) and a chemical treatment. After triple crushing three fractions were obtained: an intermediate fraction (0.4–1 mm) of directly recoverable glass (17%w/w)...
Conference Paper
In 2014, the European Union defined a list of 20 raw materials critical for economic importance and high supply risk. The aim of this work is to present the main results achieved within the EU-FP7 Project HydroWEEE-Demo dealing with the recovery of indium and cobalt, metals included in such European list, from LCD scraps and end of life Li-ion batt...
Article
Full-text available
Photovoltaic (PV) technology for renewable energy utilisation is constantly growing throughout the world. Many recent efforts were devoted to the treatment of end-of-life panels, but only two full-scale processes were developed for crystalline silicon modules (Deutsche Solar) and CdTe panels (First Solar). Furthermore, recent developments concerned...
Article
Full-text available
Biotechnological processes based on microalgae cultivation are promising for several industrial applications. Microalgae are photoautotrophic microorganisms and can thus grow by using renewable and inexpensive resources as sunlight, inorganic salts, water and CO2. They can store high amounts of neutral lipids (bioil), carbohydrates (mainly starch),...
Article
Full-text available
Biosorption can be a promising technology in rare earth metal separation and recovery due to the low costs of waste biomasses (used as biosorbents) and the high selectivity exploiting specific interaction between metals and biological active sites. In this work, Saccharomyces cerevisiae biomass was used to recover lanthanum. Biosorption properties...
Article
Full-text available
Secondary treatment of heavy metal bearing solutions requires highly expensive procedures including the application of ionic exchange resins or activated carbon packed in fixed bed reactors. The use of nanoparticles with magnetic properties as adsorbents can improve metal removal performances allowing for the achievement of high specific surface ar...
Article
Biotechnological processes based on microalgae cultivation are promising for several industrial applications. Microalgae are photoautotrophic microorganisms and can thus grow by using renewable and inexpensive resources as sunlight, inorganic salts, water and CO2. They can store high amounts of neutral lipids (bioil), carbohydrates (mainly starch),...
Article
An innovative process was optimized to recover Co from portable Lithium Ion Batteries (LIB). Pilot scale physical pretreatment was performed to recover electrodic powder from LIB. Co was extracted from electrodic powder by a hydrometallurgical process including the following main stages: leaching (by acid reducing conditions), primary purification...
Article
Cobalt nanoparticles were synthesized by pulsed electrodeposition on copper substrate. Scanning electron microscopy and image analysis were used to determine morphology and particle size distribution of nanoparticle populations obtained in different operating conditions. After preliminary tests, ton and toff were set at 50 and 300 ms respectively t...
Article
Full-text available
In this contribution a study of electrochemical deposition of cobalt nanoparticles onto aluminium foils is presented. The study is aimed at deriving information required for design and control of cobalt nanoparticles electrodeposition onto aluminium foams employed as catalysts support in ethanol reforming. A thorough experimental analysis was in th...
Article
Full-text available
Elevated costs of biomass downstream processing represent a severe limit to the industrial development of microalgal production systems. Biorefinery solutions allowing simultaneously deriving biofuels and extracting high value compounds must be explored to enhance economic feasibility. In this work, the possibility to extract carbohydrates, lipids...
Article
Hydrotreating catalysts (HTCs) are a waste byproduct of the petroleum refining industry. The recovery of intrinsic and sorbed metals from spent catalysts is desirable for meeting environmental disposal regulations, as well as for the metal resell value. In this study, innovative process schemes for metal recovery from end-of-life (i.e., spent) HTCs...
Article
BackgroundA major obstacle to the application of microalgae for bio-fuel production is light intensity reduction in high density cultures. Mixotrophic operation can solve this problem by exploiting the ability of microalgae to grow on organic carbon in dark conditions. In this article, mixotrophic growth of Nannochloropsis oculata and Chlorella vul...
Article
A dynamic model was developed for representing the abatement of sulfates and metals in column reactors inoculated with sulfate reducing bacteria. The model framework includes both bioactive mechanisms (bioreduction of sulfates and bioprecipitation of metals) and passive abiotic mechanism (sorption onto the column filling). Sorption capacities of co...
Article
Full-text available
Recycling of polycrystalline silicon, amorphous silicon and CdTe photovoltaic panels was investigated by studying two alternative routes made up of physical operations: two blade rotors crushing followed by thermal treatment and two blade rotors crushing followed by hammer crushing. Size distribution, X-ray diffraction and X-ray fluorescence analys...
Article
Hydrogen photo-production by a wild type and two engineered strains of Chlamydomonas reinhardtii was investigated. Growth rate values and hydrogen yields attained as the concentration of acetate and nitrogen vary were compared. In the analysis of microalgal growth, the interaction between organic carbon (acetate) and nitrogen (nitrate) was investig...
Article
Co and Li recovery by acid-reducing leaching of lithium ion battery powder was investigated evidencing that glucose efficiency changes depending on leaching procedure. Postponing glucose addition metal extractive yields were higher (88% for Co and 92% for Li) than adding glucose at the beginning (60% for both). Chromatographic analyses evidenced th...
Article
In this work experimental results of potentiometric titration and Cr removal at different ionic strength using a heterotrophically-grown biomass of Chlorella vulgaris were reported for the first time in the literature. Biomass cell wall was characterized by potentiometric titrations and IR spectra. Titration modeling denoted the presence of four ki...
Article
Full-text available
Manganese carbonate nanoparticles were produced by microemulsion method. The effects of different operating conditions on nanoparticles' mor-phology, size, and polydispersity were determined. The reference system was made of cetyl trimethylammoni-um bromide, cyclohexane (as solvent), pentanol (as cosurfactant), and reactants MnCl 2 and (NH 4) 2 CO...
Conference Paper
The application of a structured population balance model to the numerical simulation of microalgal growth in a continuous photobioreactor is discussed. The analysis is focused on the interplay between microalgal metabolism and photobioreactor operation. The proposed model is structured to describe the evolution of mass distribution among different...
Patent
Full-text available
The invention herewith described refers to the recovery of basic and precious metals from the fluorescent powders and plant for recovery thereof. The powders from the cathode ray tube (CRT) and powders from lights, after separation from the electronic/electrical equipment (EEE) and possibly after a pre-treatment (as a cathode ray tube CRT powders t...
Article
Full-text available
In this paper the recycling of nickel metal hydride (NiMH), lithium ion (Li-ion) and primary lithium batteries was examined. Three mechanical routes of treatment were developed for each type recovering mainly three fractions: ferrous metals, non-ferrous metals and electrodic powders. The above mentioned types of spent batteries were also treated to...
Article
Full-text available
The control and inhibition of pyrite bioleaching involved in the generation of acid mine drainage was studied. Inhibition of pyrite bioleaching was performed by varying the pyrite concentration in the medium (substrate inhibition) and/or by addition of limestone (inhibition by pH increase) and olive pomace (inhibition by organic compounds). Inhibit...
Article
Full-text available
This paper deals with description of an Italian project aimed at construction of the first recycling plant in Italy which will treat 1000 tonn/year of alkaline and Zn-C spent batteries at full capacity. The plant is located in Colico, on the north shore of the Como’s lake. The research activities started with lab-scale tests following all the next...
Article
In this paper two hydrometallurgical processes were analyzed for recovery of lithium and cobalt from lithium ion batteries. The effect of adding a secondary purification step by solvent extraction was evaluated in terms of product purity and economical feasibility of the process. Process routes were made of the following steps: mechanical pretreatm...
Article
Full-text available
In this work the control and the inhibition of pyrite bioleaching, involved in acid mine drainage generation, was studied. Inhibition of pyrite bioleaching was performed by variation of pyrite concentration in the medium (substrate inhibition) and/or by addition of limestone (inhibition by pH increase) and olive pomace (inhibition by organic compou...
Article
Biological treatment of Cr(VI) contaminated waters was performed in fixed bed reactors inoculated with SRB (sulphate-reducing bacteria) growing on ethanol. Treatment efficiency was evaluated by checking chemical abatement of Cr(VI) and by ecotoxicological tests using the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans. A preliminary comparison between ethanol and...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
In this paper an integrated process for bio-oil, fine chemicals and energy production from microalgae in photobioreactors is proposed. The proposed process is aimed to: fix carbon dioxide coming from thermovalorization plants; use the industrial effluents containing organic carbon and nitrogen for the heterotrophic growth of microalgae; obtain bio-...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
In this work a mathematical model for simulating biological sulphate reduction processes was developed and validated by experimental data in fixed bed columns as lab-scale representations of permeable reactive barriers (PRBs). The model takes in consideration transport and adsorption of sulphate and heavy metals, sulphate bioreduction, bioprecipita...
Article
Full-text available
Natural oxidation of sulphide minerals, exposed to the combined action of oxygenand water, results in the worst environmental problem associated with mining activities,i.e. acid mine drainage (AMD). Waters polluted by AMD are often characterised by lowpH, elevated concentrations of iron, sulphates and toxic metals.Biological remediation options in...
Article
The aim of this work was developing a hydrometallurgical process to recover metals from automobile shredded residue (or car fluff). Automobile shredded residue (ASR) was characterised by particle size distribution, total metal content and metal speciation in order to guide the choice of target metals and the operating conditions of leaching. Charac...
Article
In this study olive pomace was used as a source of binding substances for the development of composite biosorbents to be used in heavy metal removal from aqueous solutions. The aim was to obtain biosorbent material with an increased concentration of binding sites. The effects of two different extraction procedures (one using only methanol and the o...
Article
Biosorbing properties of sulphate reducing bacteria were tested to distinguish the amount of cadmium removed by bioprecipitation from that bound onto biomass surface (biosorption). Experimental results of cadmium abatement in batch growth tests (bioprecipitation tests) were then compared with metabolism-independent binding properties of SRB cell wa...
Article
Acid leaching of manganese from the powders of exhausted zinc alkaline batteries has been studied using carbohydrates as reducing agents. A mono-saccharide (glucose) and a di-saccharide (lactose) have been tested, the second as a template of industrial wastes. Manganese leaching was complete in the presence of both carbohydrates, along with zinc. D...
Article
In this work a batch-optimised mixture (w/w %: 6% leaves, 9% compost, 3% Fe(0), 30% silica sand, 30% perlite, 22% limestone) was investigated in a continuous fixed bed column reactor for the treatment of synthetic acid-mine drainage (AMD). A column reactor was inoculated with sulphate-reducing bacteria and fed with a solution containing sulphate an...
Article
BACKGROUND: In this study a comparison between two continuously operating fixed-bed column systems was performed in order to select the best operating conditions in terms of organic sources for sulphate reducing bacteria (SRB). The first column system (solid substrate, SS) was filled with a solid reactive mixture containing the organic matter neces...
Article
Solid reactive mixtures were tested as filling material for the development of biological permeable reactive barriers for the treatment of heavy metals contaminated waters. Mixture selection was performed by taking into account the different mechanisms operating in sulphate and cadmium removal with particular attention to bioprecipitation and sorpt...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
In recent years there has been a growing interest in processes for the treatment of spent portable batteries, due to problem of environmental impact connected with the presence of significant quantities of heavy metals. As a matter of fact, batteries are considered special waste by current legislation that establishes specific rules for the collect...
Conference Paper
The objective of this work was to describe the automobile shredder residue in order to study an appropriate final destination for this waste. Granulometric classification was operated and it was noticed that 60% of car fluff sample was a fraction < 0.5 mm of diameter. Metals content was investigated and results showed that Fe were 65% of total meta...
Article
Full-text available
The aim of the work was the comparison between a selected reactive mixture containing organic matter for SRB and other electron donors, such as ethanol and polysaccharides. The comparison was performed in order to select the best operating conditions in terms of organic sources for SRB. A continuously operating fixed-bed column was filled with a ba...
Article
Full-text available
Obligate autotrophic and acidophilic characteristics of iron oxidizing bacteria were exploited to prevent or attenuate the generation of AMD. Inhibition of iron oxidizing bacteria growth was performed by variation of growth medium by increasing pyrite concentration (substrate inhibition), by addition of limestone (inhibition by pH increase) and oli...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
This paper concerns part of the experimental results obtained on lab-scale for testing a new process for recycling of alkaline and zinc-carbon spent batteries. This process was patented in 2006 (Patent EP 1,684,369 “Process and plant for the treatment of run-down batteries”). Batteries are dismantled to recover the coarse fraction, mainly composed...
Article
This paper investigates the chemical mechanisms operating in cadmium and lead removal by activated sludge in sequencing batch reactors. Selective extraction and acid digestion of sludge samples denoted that both Cd and Pb are mainly present as surface-bound metals. Characterisation of sludge samples by potentiometric titrations and IR spectra sugge...