A Study on the Effect of Particle Size on Li-Ion Battery Recycling via Flotation and Perspectives on Selective Flocculation

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Journal ISSN
Volume Title
A1 Alkuperäisartikkeli tieteellisessä aikakauslehdessä
Date
2023-01-17
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Mcode
Degree programme
Language
en
Pages
Series
Batteries, Volume 9, issue 2
Abstract
The recycling of active materials from Li-ion batteries (LIBs) via froth flotation has gained interest recently. To date, recycled graphite has not been pure enough for direct reuse in LIB manufacturing. The present work studied the effect of particle sizes on the grade of recycled graphite. Furthermore, selective flocculation is proposed as a novel approach to control particle sizes and thus improve graphite grade by preventing the entrainment of cathode components. Zeta potential and particle size measurements were performed to find an optimal pH for electrically selective flocculation and to study the interaction of flocculants, respectively. Batch flotation experiments were performed to investigate the effect of particle size on the purity of the recovered graphite. Results suggested that, in the absence of ultrafine fine particles, battery-grade graphite of 99.4% purity could be recovered. In the presence of ultrafine particles, a grade of 98.2% was observed. Flocculating the ultrafine feed increased the grade to 98.4%, although a drop in recovery was observed. By applying a dispersant in addition to a flocculant, the recovery could be increased while maintaining a 98.4% grade. Branched flocculants provided improved selectivity over linear flocculants. The results suggest that particle size needs to be controlled for battery-grade graphite to be recovered.
Description
Funding Information: This research was funded by the Business Finland BATCircle2.0 project, grant number 44886/31/2020. T.R. thanks the Technology Industries of Finland Centennial Foundation (Steel and Metal Producers Fund) for a Doctoral studies scholarship. Publisher Copyright: © 2023 by the authors.
Keywords
direct recycling, froth flotation, lithium-ion batteries, selective flocculation
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Citation
Rinne, T, Araya-Gómez, N & Serna-Guerrero, R 2023, ' A Study on the Effect of Particle Size on Li-Ion Battery Recycling via Flotation and Perspectives on Selective Flocculation ', Batteries, vol. 9, no. 2, 68 . https://doi.org/10.3390/batteries9020068