Canada-based American Manganese Inc. (AMY) announced that its processing partner, Kemetco Research, has commenced the processing of a select sample of Li-ion cathode scrap material through Stages 1 and 2 of a pilot recycling plant. (Earlier post.) Commencement of the pilot plant followed a HAZOP study and preliminary testing of all the unit operations in Stage 1 and Stage 2.
The complete five-stage Pilot Plant operation will progress as follows:
- Pre-treatment of cathode material
- Leach of active material
- Recovery of base metals (e.g., nickel, cobalt, manganese)
- Lithium recovery and water recycle
AMY is a critical metal company with a patent-approved process for the recovery of metals from lithium-ion batteries such as cobalt, lithium, nickel, manganese, and aluminum. Using a novel combination of reagents and unit operations, AMY says it can provide 100% extraction of cathode metals. A base metal oxide is recovered separately from lithium carbonate. The base metal oxide and lithium carbonate are recovered at a battery grade purity and can be used directly back into re-manufacturing new battery cathodes.
American Manganese Inc. Battery Recycling Flow Sheet.
The recoverable value for these metals is estimated to be as high as US$75.8 million per GWh of LCO batteries. In terms of EVs, the recoverable metal value from 100,000 EV battery packs (100kWh) with NMC-111 cathodes is worth an estimated US$340M, the company says.
AMY aims to capitalize on its patent-approved technology and proprietary know-how to become the industry leader in recycling spent electric vehicle lithium-ion batteries.
AMY raised approximately US$2.3 million for the pilot plant project; testing is planned to be completed by May 2019. Once pilot plant testing is complete, AMY will look to raise US$10 million to build a commercial plant with a processing capacity of 1,100 tonnes per year of pre-production cathode scrap.
At the planned processing capacity, the commercial plant would have an estimated annual revenue of US$17.88 million and would pay back the initial capital investment of US$10 million in approximately 14 months.
American Manganese Inc. has also signed a Memorandum of Understand with Battery Safety Solutions B.V. for the purpose of forming a partnership to create and commercialize a complete closed-loop solution for collecting, discharging, dismantling, and recycling lithium-ion batteries.
Kemetco Research is a private-sector integrated science, technology and innovation company. Its Contract Sciences operation provides laboratory analysis and testing, field work, bench-scale studies, pilot plant investigations, consulting services, applied research and development for both industry and government. Clients range from start-up companies developing new technologies through to large multinational corporations with proven processes.