TORONTO – Electra Battery Materials Corporation (TSXV: ELBM) (OTCQX: FTSSF) (the “Company”) today announced the positive results of engineering studies and metallurgical tests for the recycling of lithium-ion batteries. The Company intends to begin refining key components of electric vehicle batteries, known as black mass, in mid-2022 as part of the second phase of a four-pronged strategy to become a fleet. of low carbon battery materials in North America which will include battery grade nickel and cobalt, battery recycling and precursor fabrication. Electra is on its way to becoming one of the first companies to process recycled battery material using existing infrastructure and equipment at its Canadian hydrometallurgical complex.
- Through extensive testing, the Company has developed a scheme to recover key elements from batteries, including lithium, nickel, cobalt, copper and graphite; patent applications are pending
- Engineering studies have confirmed that Electra’s existing refinery complex has the infrastructure, scale and equipment to process a bulk sample of material on a full-scale production basis at the mid-2022 with an initial investment of less than $ 3 million.
- Electra will expand its recycling business in a modular and incremental fashion, initially targeting the dark mass of consumer electronics and then targeting primary battery waste from North American electric vehicle cell manufacturers.
- The recycling facility will have a very low carbon footprint due to a 100% hydrometallurgical process and hydroelectric power source resulting in almost zero greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.
“Security, A sustainable, home-grown solution for recycling lithium-ion batteries is essential as North America shifts to electric mobility. At present, there are no industrial-scale hydrometallurgical facilities in North America to recycle the black mass that is recovered when lithium-ion batteries are dismantled and crushed ”, said Trent Mell, CEO. “With our existing facility in Canada, Electra may be the first recycler to establish a closed loop supply of battery materials, making electric vehicles more durable and more reliant on household materials. Our first concrete steps on this path will be a factory-scale commercial demonstration in 2022 using existing facilities and equipment. “
Vice President, Project Development Mark Trevisiol added: “We plan to demonstrate our ability to manufacture products containing nickel, cobalt, copper, lithium and graphite from recycled lithium-ion batteries. This would be the first industrial-scale operation in North America to salvage this list of recycled products for resale. Our first circuit will process black ground from suppliers we have identified as potential partners and can then be extended to process waste batteries from module and cell manufacturers. “
Electra’s processing team has been working with Hatch and SGS Lakefield since Q2 2021 to develop a process scheme targeting lithium, nickel, cobalt, copper, graphite and manganese, using a 100 process % hydrometallurgical which uses existing equipment at the Company’s refinery in Canada. Testing confirmed that the current state of the refinery will allow successful hydrometallurgical processes to first produce cobalt, nickel, copper, lithium and graphite products on a commercial scale.
Capital costs for the demonstration plant are expected to be less than US $ 3 million using existing equipment, the infrastructure with an experienced on-site processing team developing the Company’s cobalt sulfate plant. An additional investment will allow the plant to produce battery-grade materials that can be fed directly back into the lithium-ion battery supply chain. The company has been contacted by more than 20 black mass producers in North America and around the world who wish to sell their feedstock to Electra for enrichment.
Electra is expanding its licensed Canadian refinery to produce 5,000 tonnes of cobalt contained in battery-grade cobalt sulfate starting in the fourth quarter of 2022. The refinery will have installed instant capacity to operate at 6,500 tonnes per year. The company’s battery materials fleet will house cobalt and nickel sulfate production plants, a large-scale lithium-ion battery recycling facility and battery precursor materials production, which will serve both customers North America and the world.
The initial capacity of the Battery Materials Park’s cobalt, nickel and precursor facilities will be designed to supply raw materials to more than 1.5 million electric vehicles per year. The facilities will be built in a modular fashion, allowing Electra to increase its capacity as the lithium-ion industry expands.
A recent report from BMO Capital Markets concluded that “hydrometallurgy (in the absence of thermal / pyro pretreatment) [is] the first lithium-ion battery recycling option, given its smaller environmental footprint (a key factor in securing OEM partnerships and factory permits). The report also notes that hydrometallurgy results in a wider raw material recovery yield potential, allows for better technology adaptability and cost efficiency Based on independent peer comparisons conducted by Minviro Ltd., Based in London, Electra’s facility will have 51% less greenhouse gas emissions than comparable factories in China. Electra will stay true to its goal and help make the world a better place.
About Electra Battery Materials
Electra builds the only fully integrated, localized, and environmentally friendly battery materials fleet in North America. Leveraging the company’s mining assets and business partners, Electra Battery Materials Park will house cobalt and nickel sulfate production plants, a large-scale lithium-ion battery recycling facility and production of battery precursor materials. , which will serve both North American and global customers. . Electra Battery Materials is an integral part of the North American battery supply chain, providing low-carbon, durable and traceable raw materials for the region’s rapidly growing electric vehicle industry.