A Novel Recycling Route for Spent Li-Ion Batteries

Materials (Basel). 2021 Dec 22;15(1):44. doi: 10.3390/ma15010044.


In this work, a recycling route for spent Li-ion batteries (LIBs) was developed. For this, the recovery of the metal content in both electrodes (anode and cathode) was investigated. Based on these results, an economic analysis of this recycling process was carried out. The obtained results showed that more than 90% of the material contained in both electrodes was recycled. The dissolution with acetic acid of the metals present in the active cathodic material is thermodynamically viable and the addition of a reducing agent such as hydrogen peroxide improved the spontaneity of the reaction. Dissolutions close to 100% for Li and Co were obtained. In addition, it was determined that the synthesis of lithium and cobalt valuable compounds was viable from the leach liquor, recovering approximately 90% of Co as cobalt oxalate, and 92% of Li as lithium carbonate. Furthermore, carbon graphite and Cu were fully recovered (100%) from the anodes. Finally, the results of the economic analysis showed that the recovered products have a high commercial value and industrial interest, providing an environmentally and economically viable process.

Keywords: LIBs; economical; recycling; thermochemical.