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1m battery deal will get ‘green’ lead refinery off to flying start

Fri, 05/20/2016 - 12:03 -- Paul Crompton
1m battery deal will get ‘green’ lead refinery off to flying start

A deal to process 1,000,000 lead batteries a year will allow ‘green’ recycling start-up Aqua Metals to run its new plant at near capacity from day one once it opens.

The US company, which is opening an electrochemical lead recycling plant in Nevada this July, signed a definitive agreements with North American replacement battery maker Interstate Batteries.

The company will also make a strategic investment of around $10million into Aqua Metals.

Interstate Batteries will supply around 1,474 tonnes of automotive and other lead-acid scrap batteries a month as feedstock for Aqua Metals’ AquaRefineries.

Once opened, AquaMetal says its Nevada plant will be able to process 80 tonnes of lead per day by 2017 using its patent pending AquaRefining™ technology.

Aqua Metals plans to double this amount by 2018, and with Interstate Batteries recycling more than 24.9 million automotive batteries in 2015, the deal will allow both companies to scale up their partnership in the future.

Stephen Clarke, chairman and CEO of Aqua Metals, said: “As we grow, we are able to create a more sustainable ecosystem for lead as a power source. We look forward to growing our partnership with Interstate Batteries.”

AquaRefining uses an electrowinning process in a closed-loop, room temperature, water-based recycling method to recover 50% alloy and 50% lead from spent batteries.

Scott Miller, president and CEO of Interstate Batteries, said: “Our focus is on the future of our industry and continued growth. Aqua Metals’ breakthrough technology is a promising new way for recycling lead-acid batteries.”

The agreement was expected to close before today (May 23) subject to customary closing conditions.

Read all about Aqua Metals in our archive article database available here