American Manganese Inc., Surrey, British Columbia, developed a system designed to extract metals from spent electric vehicle batteries earlier this year. At the beginning of October, the company had announced that its independent contract lab, Kemetco Research Inc., had begun testing third-party lithium-ion battery materials after a successful pilot of the plant project’s final stage in September.
According to a news release from American Manganese, the company has received initial results from Kemetco Research regarding the recycling tests of lithium-ion battery material received from tier-one companies. (With respect to the company’s confidentiality agreement with the two tier-one companies, the companies will be referred to as “Company A” and “Company B,” American Manganese reports.)
The work initiated with laboratory studies sought to determine the optimum conditions to operate a larger scale pilot run to produce larger quantities of material for customer evaluation. Based on the initial laboratory tests, nickel cobalt hydroxide was successfully produced from the as received cathode scraps. Recycled samples from Company A reported a recovery of 88.75 percent for cobalt and 84.12 percent for nickel using the RecycLiCo patented process. According to a news release from American Manganese, this material was received as long fine strips and past experience has shown the recoveries can be improved with a different size of shredding to enhance separation of the active material from the aluminum foil. This sizing is proprietary to American Manganese, which the company will advise to the tier-one companies.
“We have produced high-quality nickel-cobalt hydroxide from our initial tests of tier-one NCA cathode scrap and are optimizing the conditions for a production run of a larger quantity of material for customer testing, which we are proceeding,” says Norm Chow of Kemetco Research.
On the completion of sample lithium-ion battery material from Company A, the company reports that it will report on Company B as the results are received. “Lithium-ion batteries for tier-one companies have a high standard for quality and Kemetco is doing an excellent job ensuring that we produce tier-one recycled lithium-ion battery cathode materials,” adds Larry Reaugh, president and CEO of American Manganese.