Abstract of doctoral thesis - Vassilios Nikolis

"Management and recycling of waste of electrical and electronic equipment"


Electronic and electrical equipment industry is one of the most rapidly developed industrial sectors. The incorporation of technological innovations in conjunction with the increasing population and wealth, all over the world, has led to the discarding of large amounts of equipment. Waste electronic and electrical equipment (WEEE) is in the agenda of governments, industry and non-governmental organizations for more than 40 years. In the early 1990s, all member states of the European Union adopted a legal framework that focuses on WEEE in order to reduce the environmental pollution and protect the public health. Although the intent and the spirit of the WEEE Directive are quite clear and are also broadly supported, the very complexity of the matter makes it extremely difficult to effectively balance all the environmental, technical, economic and social subjects. Since the volume and cost of disposal of the fractions changes as a function of time, the treatment and recycling of WEEE have become a potential industrial sector that incorporates scientific and technological achievements and influences the economy. The purpose of this dissertation is focused on this issue. More specifically, it will initially be a record of global, European and domestic legislation that will categorize waste in their various categories. Then, a bibliographic review of WEEE management and recycling methodologies will be made by category. Finally, different approaches to the management and recycling of specific categories of WEEE will be studied and proposed with a view to saving natural and human resources, saving energy and protecting both the environment and human health.