Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) researchers and industry partners including PowerCo, Umicore, Weber Ultrasonics and Siemens are working together to improve spent battery recycling by recovering active components while maintaining functionality.
The consumption of energy and chemicals in current recycling processes is high. The new approaches are based on the direct recycling of active materials from spent batteries or production waste.
“The active materials are no longer dissolved completely. Instead, they are decomposed into their constituents and separated mechanically so that highly pure fractions can be recovered,” said KIT’s project coordinator Marco Gleiß. The process can be adjusted to various starting materials of battery production as well as to production waste, and can be used to recycle various battery types and designs.
“The project primarily covers the development of an agile process chain for the direct recycling of lithium-ion batteries and regeneration of the recovered active materials,” says project coordinator Dr. Thomas Dreyer from Weber Ultrasonics.