Study: Recycled Lithium Batteries as Good as Newly Mined

[…]

while the EV battery recycling industry is starting to take off, getting carmakers to use recycled materials remains a hard sell. “In general, people’s impression is that recycled material is not as good as virgin material,” says Yan Wang, a professor of mechanical engineering at Worcester Polytechnic Institute. “Battery companies still hesitate to use recycled material in their batteries.”

A new study by Wang and a team including researchers from the US Advanced Battery Consortium (USABC), and battery company A123 Systems, shows that battery and carmakers needn’t worry. The results, published in the journal Joule, shows that batteries with recycled cathodes can be as good as, or even better than those using new state-of-the-art materials.

The team tested batteries with recycled NMC111 cathodes, the most common flavor of cathode containing a third each of nickel, manganese, and cobalt. The cathodes were made using a patented recycling technique that Battery Resourcers, a startup Wang co-founded, is now commercializing.

[…]

The researchers made 11 Ampere-hour industry-standard pouch cells loaded with materials at the same density as EV batteries. Engineers at A123 Systems did most of the testing, Wang says, using a protocol devised by the USABC to meet commercial viability goals for plug-in hybrid electric vehicles. He says the results prove that recycled cathode materials are a viable alternative to pristine materials.

[…]

“We are the only company that gives an output that is a cathode material,” he says. “Other companies make elements. So their value added is less.”

Their technology involves shredding batteries and removing the steel cases, aluminum and copper wires, plastics, and pouch materials for recycling. The remaining black mass is dissolved in solvents, and the graphite, carbon and impurities are filtered out or chemically separated. Using a patented chemical technique, the nickel, manganese and cobalt are then mixed in desired ratios to make cathode powders.

[…]

[…]

Source: Study: Recycled Lithium Batteries as Good as Newly Mined – IEEE Spectrum

Organisational Structures | Technology and Science | Military, IT and Lifestyle consultancy | Social, Broadcast & Cross Media | Flying aircraft