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DOE announces 15 Phase 1 winners of Battery Recycling Prize

The US Department of Energy (DOE) announced the 15 winners of Phase 1 of the Battery Recycling Prize, a prize that aims to reclaim and recycle critical materials (e.g., cobalt and lithium) from lithium-based battery technology. The Phase 1 winners will each receive $67,000.

For a total of $1 million in prizes, these projects focus on cost-effective recycling processes to recover as much economic value as possible from spent lithium-ion batteries. Only five percent of spent lithium-ion batteries in the United States are recycled.

The goal of these efforts is to develop technologies to profitably capture 90% of all lithium based battery technologies in the United States and recover 90% of the key materials from the collected batteries. These efforts will reduce our dependence on foreign sources of critical materials, strengthening America’s economic growth and energy security.

—Daniel R Simmons, DOE’s Assistant Secretary for the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy

As demand for consumer products such as electric vehicles, cell phones, and tablets rises, the recovery and reuse of critical materials from spent and discarded lithium-ion batteries will be an essential component of any strategy to reduce product costs and reliance on foreign sources.

In the Collection category, the winners are:

  • Holman Parts Distribution
  • Powering the Future
  • Store Packs Umicore
  • LIBIoT - Lithium-Ion Battery collection using the Internet-of-Things

In the Separation and Sorting category, the winners are:

  • Admiral Instruments
  • Li Industries
  • OnTo Technology
  • Titan AES

In the Safe Storage and Transport category, the winners are:

  • EEDD
  • Team RRCO

In the Reverse Logistics category, the winners are:

  • Renewance
  • Smartville

And in the Other Innovation Ideas category, the winners are:

  • SNT Laser Focused
  • Team EVBs
  • Team Portables

The $5.5-million, three-phased Lithium-Ion Battery Recycling Prize was announced by Secretary of Energy Rick Perry in January 2019. The prize is sponsored by the Vehicle Technologies Office and the Advanced Manufacturing Office. The National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) serves as the administrator of the Prize.

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