While electric vehicles can potentially reduce fossil fuel dependence and decrease carbon dioxide emissions, a major concern is the management of large quantities of end of life Lithium Ion Batteries (LIB) e-waste, leading to high demand of raw materials for the production of LIB. Recycling of materials from end-of-life batteries is essential for sustainability of e-mobility, in terms of environment impact of used batteries but also for sustainability of strategic metals resources. State-of art industrial processes are mainly based on pyrometallurgy (high temperature processes) and as such are energy and cost intensive. Hence, to prevent further shortage of these crucial materials and alleviate environmental impact, new ecological and efficient recycling processes of LIB need to be developed.
Circular economy inspired LIB waste management is proposed in this project for end of life LIB from electronic (e-waste) such as portable electronics, Electric vehicles (EV) and stationary energy storage applications. This project develops a new safe, efficient and flexible solution for recycling used LIB batteries and promoting closed loop. The focus is on sorting, mechanical separation and hydrometallurgical processes on recovering materials such as Li, Co, Mn, Ni, Cu, Al, Cu, graphite, LiPF6 etc. from used/waste batteries and convert them to useful second life electrode materials or other useful materials. Conditions of sorting, mechanical separation, selective dissolution and leaching will be addressed and recovery will be made using specific properties of leached metals.