PEM pub­lish­es bat­tery recy­cling info

The chair “Pro­duc­tion Engi­neer­ing of E‑Mobility Com­po­nents” (PEM) at RWTH Aachen Uni­ver­si­ty has pub­lished the brochure “Recy­cling of Lithi­um-Ion Bat­ter­ies” togeth­er with the Ger­man Engi­neer­ing Fed­er­a­tion (VDMA) and TU Braun­schweig. The 28-page doc­u­ment explains the struc­ture and func­tion­ing of the bat­ter­ies, the risks involved in han­dling them, the chal­lenges of dis­man­tling and automat­ing them, and var­i­ous approach­es to recycling.

Kamp­ker: “Devel­op­ing eco­nom­ic and sus­tain­able concepts”.
“The amount of lithi­um-ion bat­ter­ies that are in the last stage of their ‘life’ in elec­tric vehi­cles will increase mas­sive­ly in the com­ing years. That’s why we need to devel­op eco­nom­i­cal and sus­tain­able con­cepts for recy­cling and raw mate­r­i­al recov­ery,” empha­sizes PEM head Pro­fes­sor Achim Kamp­ker. Even today, a recy­cling rate of up to 95 per­cent is tech­ni­cal­ly fea­si­ble. “The still very high pro­duc­tion rejects in cur­rent bat­tery man­u­fac­tur­ing and the high increase in ‘end of life’ bat­ter­ies expect­ed in the next few years makes an ener­gy-effi­cient cir­cu­lar econ­o­my and high­er recy­cling capac­i­ties nec­es­sary,” says Pro­fes­sor Arno Kwade, founder and spokesman of the “Bat­tery Lab­Fac­to­ry” at TU Braunschweig.

The top­ic is also sig­nif­i­cant for the mechan­i­cal and plant engi­neer­ing indus­try, as a com­plete­ly new mar­ket seg­ment is open­ing up with the increas­ing need for recy­cling, adds Dr. Joachim Döh­n­er, Chair­man of the VDMA Bat­tery Pro­duc­tion Depart­ment and “Senior Direc­tor Glob­al Sales Bat­tery” at KUKA Sys­tems GmbH: “The nec­es­sary automa­tion of bat­tery dis­as­sem­bly and the recov­ery of recy­clable mate­ri­als will gen­er­ate new know-how and ulti­mate­ly also new busi­ness areas.” In order to imple­ment sus­tain­able con­cepts for bat­ter­ies at their “end of life”, all play­ers along the val­ue chain — from mate­r­i­al syn­the­sis, bat­tery cell, bat­tery mod­ule and bat­tery pack pro­duc­tion to the use phase — must address the issue, the authors of the brochure emphasize.

The doc­u­ment is avail­able for free down­load: Ger­man ver­sion | Eng­lish version