Special Issue "New Science Based Concepts for Increased Efficiency in Battery Recycling 2022"

A special issue of Metals (ISSN 2075-4701). This special issue belongs to the section "Extractive Metallurgy".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 30 June 2022.

Special Issue Editor

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

There is no doubt that e-mobility will become a tremendous driving force for our future life. High demand for advanced materials in the batteries as well as political pressures in terms of collection and recycling rates raise the need for an extensive recovery of critical elements and a more sustainable use of raw materials. This Special Issue aims to make significant progress in designing innovative processes and understanding related mechanisms in the context of battery recycling. Although we expect the majority of papers to address the latest scientific achievements in the area of lithium-based systems, the entire range from lead, to nickel–metal–hydride, to high-temperature vanadium sodium cells is covered by this compilation. Of special interest are concepts for future post-Li-systems including all solid-state cell designs. We are not focusing on consumer behavior, collection, legal, and regulation issues and market development. Papers dealing with automized disassambly/dismantling, sensor-based sorting, new concepts for comminution and classification, thermal conditioning, innovations in hydro- and pyrometallurgical processing, safety aspects regarding recycling processes, post-mortem analysis with regards to cell chemistry changes, as well as mass flow analysis and optimization models for recycling efficiency are welcome.

The idea of a circular economy is the point of origin for contributions, aiming at minimizing of waste streams and promoting re-use/recirculation of components, functional materials as well as elements. In order to minimize material losses and energy consumption, this Issue explores concepts for optimization concerning the interfaces between mechanical and thermal pre-treatments with metallurgical processes. Considering both principle aspects of circular economy and material design, the topics of special interest are those concerning recovery and re-use of critical metals like lithium, since their importance for technological applications often goes along with a lack of supply on the world market.

This Special Issue follows the 2020 issue, which can be found under
https://www.mdpi.com/journal/metals/special_issues/battery_recycling

Prof. Dr. Bernd Friedrich
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

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Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Metals is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2000 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • battery recycling
  • resource efficiency
  • circular economy
  • recovery
  • critical metals
  • waste minimization

Published Papers (2 papers)

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Research

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Article
Recovering Value from End-of-Life Batteries by Integrating Froth Flotation and Pyrometallurgical Copper-Slag Cleaning
Metals 2022, 12(1), 15; https://doi.org/10.3390/met12010015 - 22 Dec 2021
Viewed by 313
Abstract
In this study, industrial lithium-ion battery (LIB) waste was treated by a froth flotation process, which allowed selective separation of electrode particles from metallic-rich fractions containing Cu and Al. In the flotation experiments, recovery rates of ~80 and 98.8% for the cathode active [...] Read more.
In this study, industrial lithium-ion battery (LIB) waste was treated by a froth flotation process, which allowed selective separation of electrode particles from metallic-rich fractions containing Cu and Al. In the flotation experiments, recovery rates of ~80 and 98.8% for the cathode active elements (Co, Ni, Mn) and graphite were achieved, respectively. The recovered metals from the flotation fraction were subsequently used in high-temperature Cu-slag reduction. In this manner, the possibility of using metallothermic reduction for Cu-slag reduction using Al-wires from LIB waste as the main reductant was studied. The behavior of valuable (Cu, Ni, Co, Li) and hazardous metals (Zn, As, Sb, Pb), as a function of time as well as the influence of Cu-slag-to-spent battery (SB) ratio, were investigated. The results showcase a suitable process to recover copper from spent batteries and industrial Cu-slag. Cu-concentration decreased to approximately 0.3 wt.% after 60 min reduction time in all samples where Cu/Al-rich LIB waste fraction was added. It was also showed that aluminothermic reduction is effective for removing hazardous metals from the slag. The proposed process is also capable of recovering Cu, Co, and Ni from both Cu-slag and LIB waste, resulting in a secondary Cu slag that can be used in various applications. Full article
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Review

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Review
Cobalt Recovery from Li-Ion Battery Recycling: A Critical Review
Metals 2021, 11(12), 1999; https://doi.org/10.3390/met11121999 - 10 Dec 2021
Viewed by 534
Abstract
The increasing demand for Li-ion batteries for electric vehicles sheds light upon the Co supply chain. The metal is crucial to the cathode of these batteries, and the leading global producer is the D.R. Congo (70%). For this reason, it is considered critical/strategic [...] Read more.
The increasing demand for Li-ion batteries for electric vehicles sheds light upon the Co supply chain. The metal is crucial to the cathode of these batteries, and the leading global producer is the D.R. Congo (70%). For this reason, it is considered critical/strategic due to the risk of interruption of supply in the short and medium term. Due to the increasing consumption for the transportation market, the batteries might be considered a secondary source of Co. The outstanding amount of spent batteries makes them to a core of urban mining warranting special attention. Greener technologies for Co recovery are necessary to achieve sustainable development. As a result of these sourcing challenges, this study is devoted to reviewing the techniques for Co recovery, such as acid leaching (inorganic and organic), separation (solvent extraction, ion exchange resins, and precipitation), and emerging technologies—ionic liquids, deep eutectic solvent, supercritical fluids, nanotechnology, and biohydrometallurgy. A dearth of research in emerging technologies for Co recovery from Li-ion batteries is discussed throughout the manuscript within a broader overview. The study is strictly connected to the Sustainability Development Goals (SDG) number 7, 8, 9, and 12. Full article
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