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By Shane Lasley
Metal Tech News 

Another step in commercializing RecycLiCo

American Manganese invests to upscale battery recycling tech Metal Tech News – March 17, 2021


Last updated 3/16/2021 at 5:49pm

RecycLiCo American Manganese Kemetco Research rare earth battery recycling plant

American Manganese Inc.

High purity nickel-cobalt hydroxide produced from the cathodes of spent lithium-ion batteries using RecycLiCo, a recycling process being developed under a partnership between American Manganese and Kemetco Research.

American Manganese Inc. has awarded Kemetco Research Inc., a leading metallurgical laboratory based in British Columbia, C$2.7 million to develop a 500-kilogram-per-day demonstration recycling plant and the design for a five-metric-ton-per-day commercial recycling plant that utilizes American Manganese's patented RecycLiCo process.

Developed under a partnership with Kemetco, RecycLiCo is a process to recover cobalt, lithium, nickel, manganese, and aluminum from the cathodes of spent lithium-ion batteries.

"Lithium-ion battery recycling is gaining recognition and I'm proud of Kemetco and our team for having the foresight to recognize this opportunity in 2016 and secure leading patents in this field," said American Manganese President and CEO Larry Reaugh. "Research and development projects take time to perfect and minimize risk, but our head-start puts us in an envious position as we advance towards a commercial offering."

Over the ensuing five years, this collaboration has successfully:

Tested the recovery from various cathode chemistries such as nickel-cobalt-aluminum (NCA), nickel-manganese-cobalt (NMC), lithium-cobalt-oxide (LCO), and lithium-manganese-oxide (LMO).

Optimized the RecycLiCo process and scaled the technology from bench-scale to pilot plant testing.

Extracted up to 99.7% of lithium, nickel, manganese, and cobalt during RecycLiCo pilot plant testing.

Achieved up to 99.99% purity on recycled lithium-ion battery materials.

RecycLiCo American Manganese Kemetco Research rare earth battery recycling plant

American Manganese Inc.

With RecycLiCo, cathode scraps can be turned into aluminum foil, nickel-cobalt hydroxide, and lithium carbonate. These materials can be reused to create new lithium-ion batteries.

So far, American Manganese has been issued two patents for this lithium-ion cathode recycling process and the technology is the subject of a paper published in the peer-reviewed Journal of the Electrochemical Society.

Under the new contract, Kemetco will upgrade the existing pilot plant to a 500 kg/day demonstration plant that will provide potential industry partners the ability to see the new recycling process in operation prior to licensing the technology for commercial development.

With the engineering data collected from the demonstration plant, Kemetco will design a commercial lithium-ion battery cathode waste recycling plant for American Manganese with a processing capacity of five metric tons of lithium-ion battery cathode waste per day.

"After market research and consultation with Kemetco, we have decided to increase our initially planned commercial plant capacity from three tonnes/day to five tonnes/day," said Reaugh.

Author Bio

Shane Lasley, Metal Tech News

With more than 14 years of covering mining, Shane is renowned for his insights and and in-depth analysis of mining, mineral exploration and technology metals.

Email: [email protected]
Phone: 907-726-1095


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