Advanced recycling technology of power battery -Lithium - Ion Battery Equipment

Strengthen advanced recovery technology of power battery -Lithium - Ion Battery Equipment

"Lithium battery is the core component of new energy vehicles. Recycling of retired batteries should be an important part of the whole life cycle of power batteries, but it is relatively extensive in China at present. If we do not pay close attention to the research and development of advanced recycling technology of power lithium batteries, it will seriously restrict the development of the battery industry and even the new energy vehicle industry."

Recently, Fei Weiyang, an academician of the CAS Member and a professor of Tsinghua University, shared his thoughts on strengthening the research and development of advanced recovery technology for power lithium batteries at the decision-making consultation salon for power lithium battery recovery hosted by the Beijing Association of Science and Technology and the Literature and Information Center of the Chinese Academy of Sciences.(Lithium - Ion Battery Equipment)

Scarce resources must be treasured

Fei Weiyang pointed out that lithium products are widely used in such industries as nuclear industry, batteries, glass ceramics, and aerospace special industries. In recent years, the demand for power batteries for electric vehicles has exceeded that of glass ceramics and other traditional fields, becoming a major growth point. Although China is rich in lithium resources, there are also limitations. For example, the total amount of lithium resources in Qinghai Salt Lake is very large, but the concentration of lithium in brine is very low, and the ratio of magnesium to lithium is very high, so it is difficult to extract lithium from salt lake brine.

After years of efforts, China has made progress in technologies for extracting lithium from salt lake brine, such as membrane method, adsorption method, calcination leaching method and extraction method. Some enterprises can use these technologies to produce thousands of tons of lithium products every year. However, process equipment needs to be improved, product quality needs to be improved, and environmental protection needs to be strengthened urgently. At present, the battery grade lithium products used in China still rely heavily on imported resources.

As time goes by, the number of retired lithium batteries produced in China will soon reach tens of thousands of tons or even hundreds of thousands of tons each year. "Only production without recycling does not conform to the law of sustainable development, and will further threaten the natural environment.". Fei Weiyang pointed out that the cathode materials of lithium batteries contain lithium, nickel, cobalt and other precious metals. These scarce resources must be treasured and recycled.

Green development faces severe challenges

Lithium battery structure is relatively complex, including shell, diaphragm, positive electrode, negative electrode, copper collector, graphite, aluminum collector, etc. At present, the most promising lithium battery treatment process in the industry is the wet process. First, the battery shell must be broken by mechanical method, then the valuable metal elements can be dissolved by leaching process, and then the metal can be recovered by precipitation, extraction and other methods.

Fei Weiyang said: "The wet process has a high element recovery rate and relatively mild operating conditions, but it must also use a large number of chemical reagents, among which environmental protection must be done well."

However, domestic lithium battery recycling is basically carried out by small enterprises or even manual workshops. The technical means are simple and original, and the effective recovery rate of resources is very low, which has caused serious damage to the environment. "Our battery recycling is still extensive." Fei Weiyang said nothing.

For the future development trend of lithium battery recycling technology, Fei Weiyang suggested that: first, we should achieve automatic safe and efficient disassembly to improve efficiency and ensure safety. The second is to achieve efficient recovery of valuable metals. For various types of retired lithium batteries, create advanced processes and equipment that can efficiently leach and recover valuable elements. More importantly, the secondary pollution in the recycling process should be controlled to avoid threats to the environment and health. The recovery of power lithium battery is related to the national policy of protecting blue sky, clear water and pure land, which must be paid close attention to.



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