Finnish companies Fortum and Crisolteq have teamed up to launch a materials recovery process claimed to make more than 80% of electric vehicle (EV) batteries recyclable.
Power company Fortum said the technology uses “a low-CO2 hydrometallurgical process”, developed by metal recycling services firm Crisolteq, to recover scarce battery metals such as cobalt, nickel, manganese and lithium.
Crisolteq said its hydrometallurgical recycling facility in Harjavalta, western Finland, is able to deploy the process on “an industrial scale”.
Fortum VP Kalle Saarimaa said: “There are very few working, economically viable technologies for recycling the majority of materials in lithium-ion batteries. The ultimate aim is for the majority of the battery’s components to be recycled to new batteries.”
Fortum said it is also piloting second-life applications for EV batteries in stationary energy storage.
The European Association for Storage of Energy has proposed that the cost of recycling used EV batteries should be covered “at least in part” by original equipment manufacturers.
BEST Battery Briefing reported last year on a study that found more than half of Europe’s used batteries “disappear” without proper treatment because of “outdated” recycling rules and inadequate targets for collecting lithium-ion batteries.