XALT Energy and the ReCell Center, the battery recycling centre of the US Department of Energy’s Vehicle Technologies Office, are launching a joint collaboration to develop a sustainable recycling process for lithium-ion batteries.
The goal of the recycling collaboration is to develop a simple separation process that enables direct recycling of used electrode materials into new battery electrodes. For doing so, the US Department of Eenergy’s Argonne and Oak Ridge National Laboratories proposed a fundamental research program to develop a recycling process that, unlike existing hydro- and pyro-metallurgical methods, would separate and rejuvenate cycle-damaged, nickel-manganese-cobalt foil coatings for reuse in new batteries.
Researchers expect the global demand for lithium-ion batteries to rise from 230 GWh in 2020 and to 1,700 GWh in 2030. For this reason, the initiators want to “create a significant cost benefit for battery manufacturers by reducing the amount of virgin raw material used in production”. Additionally, they estimate that this will help alleviate the burden on supply chains, where critical materials, such as critical materials such as nickel-manganese-cobalt oxide (NMC) are in high demand for batteries all over the globe.
“Right now, there still aren’t a lot of end-of-life electric vehicle batteries available because they last such a long time,” said Jeff Spangenberger, director of the ReCell Center. “We needed a feedstock of battery materials in order to pursue this early-stage technology. The coated foil scrap and spent pouch cells that XALT has provided to us has enabled us to conduct this recycling program.”
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