Li-Cycle to build new Li-ion battery recycling facility in Arizona; third commercial spoke
18 April 2021
Li-Cycle Corp., the largest lithium-ion battery recycler in North America, will build its third commercial lithium-ion battery recycling facility, to be located in Gilbert, Arizona, within the Phoenix metropolitan area. (Earlier post.)
When complete, Li-Cycle’s “Spoke 3” facility will be capable of processing up to 10,000 tonnes of end-of-life batteries and battery manufacturing scrap per year, bringing Li-Cycle’s total recycling capacity to 20,000 tonnes per year.
The construction of Spoke 3 builds on Li-Cycle’s existing North American Spokes, located in Rochester, New York and Kingston, Ontario, and is part of Li-Cycle’s strategic roadmap to construct twenty Spokes globally over the next five years.
The Phoenix metropolitan area is strategically located close to Li-Cycle’s existing battery supply network, as well as being at the nexus of where there will be continued growth in the quantity of lithium-ion batteries available for recycling.
Once completed, our newest Spoke facility will add significant recycling capacity to Li-Cycle, strategically expanding the geographic footprint of our closed-loop solution for recycling lithium-ion battery materials. Our Arizona Spoke will have two 5,000 tonne processing lines, effectively doubling our total recycling capacity in North America. It will also be engineered to directly process full electric vehicle packs without any dismantling. Spoke 3 will mark another important milestone as we continue to execute on our global growth plans and scale our sustainable, safe and innovative Spoke & Hub Technologies.—Tim Johnston, Co-Founder and Executive Chairman of Li-Cycle
Li-Cycle’s Spokes convert battery manufacturing scrap and end-of-life batteries into intermediate products, including “black mass”, a powder substance which contains a variety of metals, including lithium, cobalt and nickel. The Spokes will supply black mass to Li-Cycle's future North American Hub, which is currently in late-stage development in Rochester, New York.
The North American Hub will process black mass through a hydrometallurgical circuit to produce critical, battery-grade materials, including lithium carbonate, cobalt sulfate and nickel sulfate, as well as other recycled materials that can be returned to the economy. Li-Cycle’s patented Spoke & Hub Technologies minimize the overall environmental footprint of the end-to-end resource recovery process, and substantially reduce the intensity of GHG emissions that would otherwise be produced from mining these finite resources.
Li-Cycle achieves an industry-leading recovery rate of up to 95% resource mass recovery. Legacy recycling technologies have largely relied on thermal operations, which can emit harmful emissions and result in lower recovery rates.