Audi and Umicore say that they have successfully completed the test phase of their joint research project focused on recovering battery metals.

According to the companies, more than 90% of the cobalt and nickel in the batteries of the e-tron, Audi’s first electric car, can be recovered. They next plan to focus on developing a closed loop for cobalt and nickel, whereby Umicore will receive cell modules from the Audi e-tron model, which will initially be taken from development vehicles. From those cells, it will recover cobalt and nickel, and process them into precursor and cathode materials. From this, new battery cells containing recycled cobalt and nickel could be produced.

‘A closed loop for battery raw materials is a big leap technologically,’ said Dr Bernd Martens, member of the board of management for procurement and IT at Audi. ‘We save precious resources and reduce CO2 emissions. In this way we come significantly closer to our goal of a sustainable supply chain and reach a milestone on the road to achieving an overall carbon-neutral balance by 2050.’

This story uses material from Umicore, with editorial changes made by Materials Today. The views expressed in this article do not necessarily represent those of Elsevier.