Non-thermal reduction of indium oxide and indium tin oxide by mechanochemical method

Junya Kano, Eiko Kobayashi, William Tongamp, Shoko Miyagi, Fumio Saito

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Citations (Scopus)


A non-thermal process for reducing indium(III) oxide (In2O3) and/or indium tin oxide (ITO) into indium-metal by milling with lithium nitride (Li3N) under (NH3) or nitrogen (N2) gas environment is proposed in this paper. Milling operation causes mechanochemical reaction in the systems of In2O3/ITO and Li3N, to form In and LiOH. The latter is soluble in water, so that the milled sample was subjected to washing with water, enabling us to recover indium-metal. According to the characterization of the milled products by X-ray diffraction (XRD), the reduction of In2O3/ITO can be achieved in a short period of time. Analytical data by inductively coupled plasma (ICP) from dissolution of the pellets in acidic solution clearly shows that indium-metal concentration is over 95% and the yield of In from the starting oxide sample is more than 97%, depending on the milling condition. The reaction mechanism between In2O3/Li3N and NH3/N2 is also discussed in the paper, and this could be applied to recover indium-metal from electric device wastes containing ITO.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)422-425
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of Alloys and Compounds
Issue number1-2
Publication statusPublished - 2009 Sept 18


  • Indium oxide
  • Indium tin oxide
  • Lithium nitride
  • Mechanochemical reaction
  • Milling
  • Planetary ball mill

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Metals and Alloys
  • Materials Chemistry


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