Precious Metal Demand for Automotive Catalysts versus Availability from Scrapped Vehicles 820186

Estimates were made of the annual demand for precious metal in automotive catalysts and the return from scrapped vehicles from 1975-1995 for the United States plus Canada. Results show that expected scrap returns are currently small; however, by the late 1980’s nearly half the yearly precious metal demand in automotive catalysts could be obtained from scrapped vehicles. Estimates also show that continued use of rhodium at current levels for the three-way catalyst will require mining and refining substantial extra platinum group metals for the rhodium content. Precious metal costs for catalysts will therefore be influenced strongly by the overall effectiveness of a recycle system and the amount of rhodium required for NOx control.


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