Researchers at the University of California San Diego have improved their recycling process that regenerates degraded cathodes from spent lithium-ion batteries. The new process is safer and uses less energy than their previous method (earlier post) in restoring cathodes to their original capacity and cycle performance. Zheng Chen, a professor... Read more →


The Rice University lab of materials scientist Pulickel Ajayan has used an environmentally friendly deep eutectic solvent to extract valuable elements from the metal oxides commonly used as cathodes in lithium-ion batteries. The goal, researchers said, is to curtail the use of harsh processes to recycle batteries and keep them... Read more →


Fortum boosts Li-ion battery recycling rate to more than 80%

A new solution by Nordic clean energy company Fortum makes more than 80% of an electric vehicle (EV) battery recyclable, returns the scarce metals back into circulation and resolves the sustainability gap by reducing the need to mine cobalt, nickel, and other scarce metals. There are very few working, economically... Read more →


The BMW Group is the first automobile manufacturer worldwide to join the Ship Recycling Transparency Initiative (SRTI). This independent platform, launched in March 2018 by the Sustainable Shipping Initiative, aims to improve measures, transparency and awareness relating to the issue of ship recycling. The SRTI adopts a voluntary market-driven approach... Read more →


Volkswagen is setting up a pilot plant for Li-ion battery recycling at Salzgitter factory, south-west of Braunschweig, Germany. (Earlier post.) Batteries can be recycled here as early as 2020—initially 1,200 tons per year. This corresponds to 3,000 vehicle batteries. A further increase in capacity is envisaged for subsequent years. However,... Read more →


Shell will join a consortium comprising Air Liquide, Nouryon (formerly AkzoNobel Specialty Chemicals), Enerkem and the Port of Rotterdam in an effort to build Europe’s first advanced waste-to-chemicals facility in Rotterdam, the Netherlands. Shell will become an equal equity partner in the proposed commercial-scale waste-to-chemicals (W2C) project, which will be... Read more →


The US Department of Energy (DOE) has launched its first lithium-ion battery recycling center, called the ReCell Center. Recycled materials from lithium-ion batteries can be reused in new batteries, reducing production costs by 10 to 30 percent, which could help lower the overall cost of electric vehicle (EV) batteries to... Read more →


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... Read more →


DOE launches Battery Recycling Prize and establishes Battery Recycling R&D Center

Energy Secretary Rick Perry announced the launch of a Lithium-Ion Battery Recycling Prize and the establishment of an associated Battery Recycling R&D Center. These efforts aim to reclaim and recycle critical materials (e.g., cobalt and lithium) from lithium-based battery technology used in consumer electronics, defense, energy storage, and transportation applications.... Read more →


Researchers at Kyoto University in Japan are proposing the selective dismantling of certain components from end-of-life vehicles (ELVs) to increase the recycling potential of precious metals (PMs). In a paper in the ACS journal Environmental Science & Technology, they report that, in Japan, totals of 33–53% of PMs in ELVs... Read more →


USABC awards $1.08M Li-ion battery recycling project to Worcester Polytechnic Institute

The United States Advanced Battery Consortium LLC (USABC), a collaborative organization of FCA US LLC, Ford Motor Company and General Motors, has awarded $1.08 million to Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) in Worcester, Massachusetts for Phase II of a lithium-ion (Li-ion) battery recycling contract. The contract award, which includes a 50%... Read more →


A team led by Kanazawa University in Japan has developed a cleaner method for the recycling of several rare earths (REs) such as yttrium (Y) and europium (Eu) used as phosphors in fluorescent lamps (FLs). End-of-life FLs are a potentially huge source of REs, but harsh and polluting processes are... Read more →


Researchers at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) have used magnets recovered from used computer hard drives in an electric motor. The permanent magnets made from rare earth elements were reused without alteration in an axial gap motor, which can be adapted for use in electric vehicles and industrial machinery. In... Read more →


Ford approaches 1 billion pounds of aluminum recycled; 900M pounds back into Ford products

Ford’s Rouge complex in Dearborn, Michigan today makes America’s best selling vehicle—the Ford F-150—and started Ford’s industry-leading closed-loop aluminum recycling innovation (earlier post), which was then expanded to other F-150 manufacturing facilities including Dearborn Stamping, Kansas City Truck and Buffalo Stamping. Closed-loop recycling means that as hoods, tailgates, doors and... Read more →


Neste, ReNew ELP and Licella to collaborate in utilization of waste plastic as a raw material for fuels and chemicals

Neste, the leading producer of renewable diesel, UK-based chemical recycling company ReNew ELP, and Australian technology developer Licella are collaborating in a development project to explore the potential of using mixed waste plastic as a raw material for fuels, chemicals, and new plastics. In addition to studying liquefied waste plastic... Read more →


In August 2017, international metals and minerals research firm Roskill reported that Tesla would use a 3-phase permanent magnet motor in the Model 3 RWD Long Range as the powertrain motor, as opposed to the asynchronous reluctance (induction) motors used in the Model 3 RWD standard and Model X AWD.... Read more →


Engineers at the University of California San Diego and the University of California Los Angeles have developed an energy-efficient approach to regenerate Li-ion battery cathode materials (using LiCoO2 as a model material) by hydrothermal treatment of cycled electrode particles followed by short annealing. Unlike the conventional chemical leaching or solid-state... Read more →


Jaguar Land Rover seeking to increase the amount of aluminum from scrap for new vehicle production; 3-year, £2M REALITY project

Jaguar Land Rover Automotive is expanding the use of recycled aluminum in its car bodies to cut waste and reduce carbon emissions. A £2-million (US$2.6-million) project, called REALITY, will work to enable the closed-loop recycling of aluminum from end-of-life vehicles back into high-performance product forms for new vehicle body manufacture.... Read more →


IndianOil and LanzaTech to construct first refinery Offgas-to-Bioethanol production facility

Indian Oil Corporation Limited (IndianOil), India’s flagship national oil company and LanzaTech signed a Statement of Intent to construct the world’s first refinery offgas-to-bioethanol production facility in India. The basic engineering for the 40-million liter per year (10.6 million gallons US/year) demonstration facility will begin later this year for installation... Read more →


UBC engineers use fiber from recycled tires to develop more resilient concrete

University of British Columbia (UBC) engineers have used polymeric scrap tire fibers (STF) to develop a more resilient type of concrete that could be used for concrete structures such as buildings, roads, dams and bridges, while reducing landfill waste. The researchers experimented with different proportions of STF and other materials... Read more →


At Movin’On 2017, Michelin presented its new Vision concept tire. The concept tire—which combines the functions of wheel and tire—is airless, connected, rechargeable, customizable and organic, is both a wheel and a tire. Michelin Group Executive Vice President of Research and Development Terry Gettys said that the VISION concept is... Read more →


ASTM International launches group to create standards for recovered carbon black (rCB)

The ASTM International Board of Directors approved the launch of a new technical committee dedicated to developing standards for the growing field of recovered carbon black (rCB). The Committee on Recovered Carbon Black (rCB) (D36) will focus on creating and updating standards in areas such as: the decomposition of scrap... Read more →


Saint Jean Carbon building a high performance lithium-ion battery with recycled/upcycled material

Saint Jean Carbon Inc., a carbon science company engaged in the design and build of energy storage carbon materials, and a battery manufacturing partner will build a high-powered full-scale lithium-ion battery with recycled/upcycled material from an electric car power pack and upcycled anode material from Saint Jean Carbon. Saint John... Read more →


Aqua Metals has produced the first AquaRefined lead at its AquaRefinery in McCarran, Nevada. AquaRefining is a water-based, room-temperature process that is the only clean lead recycling method for lead-acid batteries (LAB). (Earlier post.) Through its own on-site assay, Aqua Metals has verified that the lead produced in the AquaRefining... Read more →


New approach for synthetic rubber for degradable tires: converting cyclopentene to polypentenamers

A team from the Texas A&M University campus in Qatar (TAMU-Qatar) and Caltech has developed a new way to make synthetic rubber; once this material is discarded, it can be easily degraded back to its chemical building blocks and reused in new tires and other products. The researchers will present... Read more →


U Florida team using fungi to extract cobalt and lithium from waste batteries

A team of researchers University of South Florida is using naturally occurring fungi to drive an environmentally friendly recycling process to extract cobalt and lithium from tons of waste batteries. The researchers presented their work at the 252nd National Meeting & Exposition of the American Chemical Society (ACS) in Philadelphia.... Read more →


Aqua Metals opens first AquaRefining center for low-pollution lead-acid battery recycling

Aqua Metals, Inc. recently held an open house at its first AquaRefinery at the Tahoe-Reno Industrial Center (TRIC) in McCarran, Nevada. The company says that its proprietary AquaRefining is first environmentally friendly process to recycle lead-acid batteries (LABs). The AquaRefining technology extracts lead from LABs with a room temperature, closed-loop,... Read more →


New research from the Worcester Polytechnic Institute’s (WPI) Center for Resource Recovery and Recycling calculated an overall recycling rate of 91% for automotive aluminum. The peer-reviewed study, funded by the Aluminum Association, examines how much aluminum used in the United States’ light-duty automotive sector is recovered and recycled from vehicles... Read more →


UK-based Recycling Technologies is industrializing a process—originally developed at the University of Warwick (UK)—to convert residual plastic waste into a low-sulfur hydrocarbon compound called Plaxx. Plaxx is created from residual mixed plastic waste that is not amenable to direct recycling and would otherwise go to landfill. The company, a 2013... Read more →


Novelis, the world leader in aluminum rolling and recycling, celebrated the commissioning of its third CASH (Continuous Annealing Solution Heat) treatment finishing line for aluminum automotive sheet in Oswego, NY. Installed to support the production of stronger, lighter and safer vehicles, the $120-million CASH 3 line expands the company’s production... Read more →


by Derek Petersen It’s fascinating how individuals and companies continue to find creative ways to recycle and reuse. Companies will attract negative attention for not doing their part to help protect the environment—potentially risking a loss in profits due to a shrinking consumer base because of their environmental decisions. One... Read more →