Recovering Copper from Basic Copper Chloride via Aluminum

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asked by anonymous

We had gotten from creating circuit boards, in a closed system to recover the copper. We resulted in getting some Basic Copper Chloride(WSDTY) flakes, but as a consequence the copper was replaced by aluminum in the chloride solution. So technically it is still a waste material that can't be used in everyday life, despite having recovered the copper. So I got thinking: If Salt, or Sodium Chloride, is Sodium and Chlorine, and is much more useful than Aluminum Chloride or Basic Copper Chloride since we need it in our everyday diets, what prevents us from using it to recover copper from chlorine?

I asked my teacher what she thought about the subject, and she explained that apparently sodium is very reactive when not bonded to anything and so is hard to come by naturally without extracting it from something else. I gathered that Aluminum, as reactive as it is, is apparently more common to find, or cheaper to manufacture, than sodium is. This was an unsure answer, as the costs and waste produced when manufacturing aluminum vs. manufacturing sodium were not looked up or explained. However, in an earlier lesson we had learned that manufacturing aluminum produces a lot of hazardous waste, and so does not have a great impact on the environment to make. I do not know about sodium and its costs and waste production.

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