Separation of cathode particles and aluminum current foil in Lithium-Ion battery by high-voltage pulsed discharge Part I: Experimental investigation

Chiharu Tokoro*, Soowon Lim, Kaito Teruya, Masataka Kondo, Kazuhiro Mochidzuki, Takao Namihira, Yasunori Kikuchi

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

To enable effective reuse and recycling processes of spent lithium-ion batteries (LiBs), here we develop a novel electrical method based on a high-voltage pulsed discharge to separate cathode particles and aluminum (Al) foil. A cathode particle sample was mechanically separated from a LiB, cut into 30-mm × 80-mm test pieces, and subjected to a high-voltage electrical pulse discharge from either end in water. At a voltage of 25 kV, 93.9% of the cathode particles separated from the Al foil. These particles were easily recovered by sieving at 2.36 mm because the Al foil retained its shape. Some Al contaminated the particles owing to generation of hot plasma and subsequent shock waves; however, the Al concentration in the recovered cathode particles was limited to 2.95%, which is low enough to allow for further cobalt and nickel recovery by hydrometallurgical processing. The results of heat balance calculations obtained from the current waveforms suggested that polyvinylidene fluoride, the main component of the adhesive in the cathode particle layers, melted and lost its adhesion through Joule heating of the Al foil at the maximum current of 19.0 kA at 25 kV. Almost 99% of the recovered cathode particles maintained their chemical composition and form after separation, and therefore could potentially be directly reused in LiBs.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)58-66
Number of pages9
JournalWaste Management
Volume125
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2021 Apr 15

Keywords

  • Cobalt recovery
  • Electrical disintegration
  • Lithium-ion battery
  • Positive electrode
  • Recycling
  • Reuse

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Waste Management and Disposal

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