Facts for Prelims (FFP)
Context: The Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) in India has transferred cost-effective lithium-ion battery recycling technology to nine recycling industries and start-ups as part of the Mission LiFE under the “Promote circularity campaign.”
This indigenous technology can process various types of discarded lithium-ion batteries, recovering over 95% of lithium, cobalt, manganese, and nickel contents in the form of corresponding oxides/carbonates with a purity of about 98%.
What is the recycling process?
The recycling process of lithium-ion batteries involves several steps.
- First, the batteries are collected, sorted and disassembled
- Next, the electrodes, which contain valuable metals like lithium, cobalt, manganese, and nickel, are extracted, through a process called leaching, where the electrodes are submerged in a liquid that dissolves these metals.
- After that, the metals are purified to remove impurities, resulting in high-purity lithium, cobalt, manganese, and nickel compounds.
Aim of recycling: To recover valuable materials from lithium-ion batteries, reducing the need for mining and minimizing environmental impact. It helps conserve resources and promotes sustainable practices in battery manufacturing.
Developed by: The technology was developed at the Centre of Excellence on E-waste Management, in collaboration with the Government of Telangana and industry partner.
India generates more than 50,000 tons of lithium-ion battery waste annually, growing in the range of 40-80%. India currently imports all of its Li from Australia and Argentina and 70% of its Li-ion cell requirement from China and Hong Kong.