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STTR Phase I: A Closed Loop Process for the recycle of End-of-Life Li-ion Batteries

Award Information
Agency: National Science Foundation
Branch: N/A
Contract: 1549531
Agency Tracking Number: 1549531
Amount: $225,000.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: STTR
Solicitation Topic Code: CT
Solicitation Number: N/A
Solicitation Year: 2015
Award Year: 2016
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): 2016-01-01
Award End Date (Contract End Date): 2016-12-31
Small Business Information
94 Francis Ave
Shrewsbury, MA 01545
United States
DUNS: 079851167
HUBZone Owned: No
Woman Owned: No
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: No
Principal Investigator
 Eric Gratz
 (206) 948-6325
Business Contact
 Eric Gratz
Phone: (206) 948-6325
Research Institution
 Worcester Polytechnic Institute
 Yan Wang
United States

 Nonprofit College or University

The broader impact/commercial potential of this Small Business Technology Transfer Phase I project is to improve the recycling rates and efficiency of lithium ion (Li-ion) batteries, as well as lower the cost of cathode materials for Li-ion batteries. This research project will accomplish these goals by recovering cathode material from a broad spectrum of Li-ion battery regardless of size, shape or chemistry. By lowering the cost of cathode materials, this project has the potential to make green technologies more viable by making energy storage more affordable. This project will seek to develop a novel method of recovering active cathode materials from spent Li-ion batteries that does not require any sorting. The recovery of active cathode materials from spent Li-ion batteries is a key advancement for Li-ion battery recycling because the cathode material is the most expensive part of the battery. This advancement is critical because traditional recycling processes only recover individual metals from the batteries. Recovering the cathode material also requires less energy than synthesizing virgin cathode materials. This project seeks to be able to offer low cost cathode materials while reducing the carbon footprint of the battery industry. The technical objectives of this Phase 1 research project are to improve the electrochemical performance of the recovered cathode materials by developing methods to control the particle morphology and increase the particle density. These improvements will increase the capacity and cycle life of the cathode materials. The conditions that control impurity removal will be closely monitored to facilitate producing cathode materials from spent Li-ion batteries with impurity levels similar to virgin materials. The process recovery efficiency will also be optimized. The process will be scaled from 1kg to 50kg which will provide enough material for Battery Resourcers LLC to have its material independently tested. In addition to recovering active cathode materials from spent lithium ion batteries, steel, copper, aluminium and plastics will also be recovered.

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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