Greentec robots helping to dismantle hard drives to recover valuable components

Greentec robots helping to dismantle hard drives to recover valuable components

September 4, 2019
Press Release: Greentec

Leading e-waste recycling center Greentec has partnered with Conestoga College on ‘Project Lexi’ – a robotic cell that completely dismantles a hard drive in under 60 seconds. The innovation will allow Greentec to recover all components within the drive

A major obstacle with hard drives is in separating and recovering useful materials such as rare earth magnets if they get commingled with steel, or caught in screens and shredder blades during processing. By learning how every make and model of hard drive is constructed, Greentec’s Lexi is able to safely and efficiently disassemble hard drives.

“Greentec typically sees around eight tonnes of hard drives a month,” stated Greentec president and CEO Tony Perrotta. “Lexi allows us to recover valuable components from the drive, including rare earth magnets, aluminum casing, circuit boards and stainless steel covers among many other materials. Once these materials have been recovered, they can be reused in the creation of new hard drives or other products including servo motors and high-efficiency energy appliances.”

Conestoga College and Greentec have collaborated in the past on numerous research projects including optical sorting optimization and ink and toner cartridge sorting solutions.

“The new robotic cell is truly a game-changer for the electronic recycling industry,” said Dr Hamid Karbasi, NSERC Industrial Research Chair for Colleges Advanced Recycling Technologies for Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment, who is one of 95 expert speakers at this year’s E-Waste World Conference & Expo. “With Lexi, recyclers can efficiently and effectively recover valuable materials and increase the rate at which these materials can be reused. We at Conestoga College are proud to be on the cutting edge of electronic recycling innovation.”

“We look forward to further exploring other devices that could be dismantled using the robotic cell process,” concluded Perrotta. “Products such as laptops, mobile phones, and tablets contain numerous high-value components that could be targeted through this robotic separation system.”

In separate Greentec news, the company has been listed as an approved recycler for mercury-containing lamps as part of the Government of Canada’s national strategy.

The National Strategy for Lamps Containing Mercury aims to eliminate this source of mercury pollution in Canada by ensuring bulbs containing mercury are collected and sent to specialized facilities for environmentally sound disposal. Greentec is equipped to properly manage this material at end-of-life using innovative and state of the art Blubox technology.

E-Waste World Conference & Expo will take place from Thursday 14 November to Friday 15 November at the Kap Europa, Frankfurt Messe, Germany. To register for this highly focused, solutions-driven event, please click here. For sponsorship and exhibition opportunities, please email

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