Recycling is one of the keys to increasing the sustainability of the electric car in this crisis brought by the coronavirus around the world. A type of mobility with less environmental impact but that has the challenge of reusing the materials that make up its batteries. These batteries have rare and expensive elements such as cobalt or nickel, in addition to lithium, which a North American company has now managed to recover most of thanks to a new process that is also in its commercial phase.
Li-Cycle has confirmed the shipment of the first recovered materials from recycled batteries using a technology that allows the recovery of between 80 and 100% of all the elements found in lithium batteries, using a mechanical and hydrometallurgical process/two-step wet chemical. This technology is capable of recycling all cathode and anode variants without the need to classify them into specific chemistries. Also, the American company guarantees that lithium batteries are processed safely without risk of thermal leakage.
That means this process is fundamental to reduce the environmental impact of the market expansion for EV´s batteries. Recycled materials provide significant not only ecological benefits but also serve to reduce the social impact of mining and refining materials such as cobalt.