How Technology is Revolutionizing Scrap Metal Recycling Sector

Recyclers and researchers continuously develop and implement more innovations to make recycling more efficient, more prevalent, and less expensive. 

FREMONT, CA: In the scrap metal recycling sector, there was a period when incoming material was manually processed, tickets were handwritten, and bookkeeping was done manually. Today's scrap metal recycling sector is at the forefront of technological advancements, leveraging new technologies to manage more material in a more efficient, accurate, and timely manner.

Technology has been used in the recycling sector to raise recycling rates, keep up with changing materials and components entering the waste stream, and enhance scrap metal recycler profitability.

In recent years, several technical advancements have been implemented in scrap metal recycling yards to sort and process waste. This technology was adopted to help accelerate the process of manually sorting things and handle the changing nature of the complexity of materials in the waste stream and the complexity of items like electronics. The objective has been to enhance the amount of recycled material while also speeding up the processing.

Sensors and sorting machines now do a lot of the work that used to be done manually. To sort non-magnetic metals, organizations are experimenting with x-ray technologies and infrared scanning. Non-metals are identified using laser object detection (LOD), which eliminates them before processing. By preserving more recyclable material in a shorter time, laser technology for scrap metal processing can lead to significant savings.

Here are a few examples of how software has aided technological advancements in the recycling industry.


Scrap metal recyclers have been able to enhance their truck fleet routing due to routing software. It can plan driving routes to make the most efficient use of resources. Consumer and vendor information can be acquired using fleet and container technology, which helps to improve service quality. This technology reduces energy usage, increases efficiency, and enhances customer interaction.

Anti-theft compliance

An effective recycling program will use technology to ensure that state and local anti-theft rules are followed accurately and completely. Scrap metal recyclers can utilize cameras, digital signature and thumbprint capture pads, and other scrap yard devices to connect to applications that generate reports uploaded to regulators for compliance.

Inventory management

Scrap metal recycling companies can benefit from software solutions that assist them in managing, evaluating, and improving their inventory flow. This is one of the most critical aspects of profitability for most businesses. A recycler can know what materials available, where they are, and when they are at any given time with the correct software package. Considering the state of processing and what is available for sale, it will reflect the price or worth of the material.

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