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DOE Invests $2 Million to Advance Li-Ion Battery Recycling and Remanufacturing Technologies.

June 7, 2023 – Lithium-ion batteries, which are used for everything from smart phones and laptops to electric vehicles and home storage, will power the clean energy economy of the future. By developing Lithium-ion battery recycling and remanufacturing technologies and capabilities, we can address difficulties in the crucial materials supply chain and better meet the nation’s expanding need for these energy sources.

As part of that effort, the U.S. Department of Energy’s Advanced Materials and Manufacturing Technologies Office (AMMTO) today announced $2 million for the rejuvenation, recycling, and reuse of Lithium-ion battery programs, administered through the ReCell Center located at Argonne National Laboratory (ANL).

AMMTO will promote the creation of Cooperative Research and Development Agreements (CRADAs) between the National Laboratories that are a component of the ReCell Centre and business partners to carry out research, development, and demonstration (RD&D) initiatives through this investment. Although RD&D initiatives without a CRADA will also be taken into consideration, these CRADA projects will require a 50% cost split between DOE and private partners.

A maximum of eight projects will get funding, with a one-year performance window anticipated. It will be the responsibility of these chosen projects, which will concentrate on research, education, and workforce development, to de-risk and scale up novel techniques for the recycling and reuse of materials from the more than two million tonnes of Li-ion batteries that are anticipated to be accessible over the next ten years.

Targeted project focus areas should include:

  • Development of room temperature process for recycling and reuse of electrodes
  • Rejuvenation (re-manufacturing) of electrodes for direct reuse
  • Recycling of electrolytes
  • Education and workforce development

Support will be prioritized for projects in a state or states that have lithium mining or li-ion battery manufacturing operations.

Established by DOE’s Vehicle Technologies Office, the ReCell Center is a collaboration of industry, academia and national laboratories working together to advance recycling technologies along the entire battery life-cycle for current and future battery chemistries. The ReCell Center aims to grow a sustainable advanced battery recycling industry by developing economic and environmentally sound recycling processes.