Audi and Umicore develop cycle for battery recycling

Audi and Umicore develop cycle for battery recycling-battery

In mid-October, we learned that BMW, Northvolt and Umicore are a technology consortium for further developing a complete, sustainable value chain for battery cells. But also with Audi Umicore works on a corresponding project for battery recycling. Last week, it became known that Phase One of Strategic Research Cooperation has been completed.

The aim of the two partners is to develop a closed circulation for ingredients of high-voltage batteries, which are always usable again and again. Particularly valuable materials should be available from a raw material bank. Umicore thus consistently goes away from its own, compensation. Because already in August showed that the material technology and recycling group UmiCore prepared for increasing battery recycling demand.

As the basis of cooperation Umicore has analyzed in June 2018, before the beginning of the actual cooperation, the plug-in hybrid car A3 e-tron and defines ways for recycling. Together with the material technology experts, the car manufacturers then determined the possible recycling odds for battery components such as cobalt, nickel and copper. The result: More than 95 percent of these elements can be recovered and reinstated in the laboratory test.

With these experiences, as a first basis, the two partners now go into the development of concrete recycling concepts. The focus is on the so-called closed-loop approach. In such a closed circuit, valuable elements of batteries flow into new products at the end of their lifecycle and are thus used further. The closed-loop approach is applied for the first time on the high-voltage batteries of the new electric car Audi E-TRON.

“We want to be a pioneer and drive recycling process. This is also building block of our program for CO2 reduction in procurement.”- Bernd Martens, Executive Board Procurement and IT of AUDI AG

Audi is committed to this partnership that battery recycling is an integral part of sustainable electromobility for the company. Starting from raw material removal via the CO2 neutral E-Tron plant Brussels to recycling components. In a further step, findings on the degree of purity of the recovered substances, the recycling ratio and the economic feasibility of concepts such as a raw material bank are now. Supply security and shorter ways are the goal.

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