ProRec: »New processes during recycling of aqueous processed and future batteries«

Brief description

New battery technologies bring some challenges but also significant opportunities in terms of recycling of aqueous processed electrodes and solid electrolytes. In the project, mechanical-hydrometallurgical recycling processes will be adapted and extended with respect to the requirements of the new materials, and evaluated on a technical and economic level. In addition, the influence of adapted processes on the chemical and structural properties of the electrode materials (anode and cathode), the solid electrolytes and the current collectors will be determined, and the advantages of the process will be worked out. This will be investigated in the context of multiple recycling of the materials. In addition to the material characterizations, it will ultimately be evaluated whether adjustments to the electrode formulations are necessary when using recovered materials.

Project schedule

The project schedule is planned as follows:

  • The Fraunhofer FFB facility will undertake the aqueous processing of electrodes using selected, innovative formulations and adaptations in an iterative approach with the research partners. 
  • Testing and validation of the respective processes and optimization of the parameters for consistent and high-quality anodes and cathodes will be carried out. Overall, the FFB is responsible for the design and execution of both the aqueous processing of the initial production and the production from the recycled materials at the research production sites "FFB Workspace" and "FFB PreFab".

Utilization of results

The economic prospects for success of the joint project ProRec are based, on the one hand, on the medium and long-term economic exploitability of the research results achieved for industrial orders (novel processes for electrode and cell production) and for electrode and battery cell manufacturers.

With regard to industrial property rights and patent applications, the project holds out the prospect of long-term economic exploitation of the research results. Particularly in the sub-areas of "recycling" and "aqueous electrode production", there is a high potential for exploitation in the long term. Along the research and development process, the results of the work will be examined for patentability and industrial property rights for new material developments, subcomponents and processes will be sought in the short and medium term. The consistent further development of the aqueous process can be used for further research projects at the Fraunhofer FFB site in Münster in the future. In addition, it is expected that the knowledge of all project participants in the field of aqueous processing and recycling of lithium-ion battery cells can be expanded on the basis of the project results and related work. The project results are to be published in the short and medium term in the form of scientific papers and articles in specialist journals and at trade fairs and conferences.