This recycling breakthrough brings EV batteries closer to circularity

In a recent Optimist View, we discussed how battery recycling must become an integral part of the electric vehicle transition. Most lithium batteries rely on heavy metal extraction which takes its own toll on the environment. Lithium iron phosphate batteries are cheaper to produce and have a longer lifetime, but it’s not cost-effective to recycle them. However, a newly discovered recycling technology could help give these batteries new life. 

Researchers from the University of California, San Diego, found that taking partially depleted lithium iron phosphate batteries and soaking their disassembled cells in a solution with a lithium salt and citric acid allowed the materials to be fashioned into new cathodes. 

This innovative structural change returns the batteries to their original stocks of lithium ions, essentially completely recycling the battery. According to the researchers, the method uses 80 to 90% less energy than other lithium iron phosphate battery recycling methods and emits 75% fewer greenhouse gases. 

The next challenge is bringing this solution to scale within the industry, but it’s a big step towards making electric vehicles more circular.

Solution News Source

This recycling breakthrough brings EV batteries closer to circularity

In a recent Optimist View, we discussed how battery recycling must become an integral part of the electric vehicle transition. Most lithium batteries rely on heavy metal extraction which takes its own toll on the environment. Lithium iron phosphate batteries are cheaper to produce and have a longer lifetime, but it’s not cost-effective to recycle them. However, a newly discovered recycling technology could help give these batteries new life. 

Researchers from the University of California, San Diego, found that taking partially depleted lithium iron phosphate batteries and soaking their disassembled cells in a solution with a lithium salt and citric acid allowed the materials to be fashioned into new cathodes. 

This innovative structural change returns the batteries to their original stocks of lithium ions, essentially completely recycling the battery. According to the researchers, the method uses 80 to 90% less energy than other lithium iron phosphate battery recycling methods and emits 75% fewer greenhouse gases. 

The next challenge is bringing this solution to scale within the industry, but it’s a big step towards making electric vehicles more circular.

Solution News Source

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