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ACE Green Recycling enters into Lithium-Ion Battery Recycling Research Agreement with National Renewable Energy Laboratory

The Cooperative Research and Development Agreement (CRADA) will focus on LFP battery recycling and Graphite recovery solutions from end-of-life lithium-ion batteries

GOLDEN, Colo., Oct. 18, 2023 /PRNewswire/ — ACE Green Recycling (ACE) and the U.S. Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) have signed a Cooperative Research and Development Agreement (CRADA) to further develop and optimize ACE’s environment friendly and low cost lithium-ion battery recycling technology for recycling of graphite, lithium-iron phosphate (LFP) and other cathode active materials. This collaboration advances DOE’s deep commitment and investments in the development of sustainable, cost effective and environment friendly lithium-ion battery recycling in the United States.

Located in Golden, Colorado, NREL is a DOE national laboratory focused on renewable energy and energy efficiency research and development. As part of this mission, NREL is committed to the development and deployment of key breakthroughs for battery recycling technologies.

The volume of LFP batteries based electric vehicles is primed to grow significantly in coming years with major automobile manufacturers like Tesla and Ford starting to switch to LFP from Nickel and Cobalt based batteries due to its lower cost. However, LFP battery recycling is seen by the industry as a particularly challenging problem due to the difficulty in extracting its valuable materials (lithium and graphite) profitably.

“Current hydrometallurgical recycling methods focus on extracting high-value materials from LFP batteries, such as lithium and copper,” said Andrew Colclasure, NREL. “To encourage a more holistic approach to recycling, we must demonstrate efficient processes that also recycle low-value materials such as graphite and iron-phosphate into commercially viable products. We look forward to working alongside our industry partners to advance low-cost recycling technologies to make the process more economical and environmentally friendly.”

ACE has already developed its proprietary technology for recycling LFP batteries at bench scale which is currently undergoing commercial scaleup. Under this research agreement, NREL will assist ACE in evaluating commercialization of this process to recycle LFP batteries and to upcycle graphite to battery grade.

“We are excited to work with the talented team at NREL in our journey to commercialize our lithium-ion battery recycling technology and help the United States move towards sustainable domestic battery materials supply chain,” said ACE Green’s Co-founder and CTO, Vipin Tyagi.

As part of the agreement, NREL will provide its capabilities in cell production, modeling, analysis and other advanced tools to demonstrate ACE technology’s value proposition with primary work to be conducted at NREL’s facility in Colorado. Overall, the project aims to identify optimal recycling parameters for LFP and graphite that will maximize performance and lifetime requirements of batteries made from recycled materials using ACE’s technology as compared to the ones made from virgin materials.

The potential upcycling of graphite obtained from ACE’s technology can help solve the dependence of more than 60,000 MT of graphite electrodes that the United States currently imports while deepening its technological and engineering leadership and reducing its dependence on foreign supply chains. NREL and ACE’s collaboration is in line with the goals of the recently announced Inflation Reduction Act which amongst other key goals, aims to support localization of supply chain of critical materials within the United States.

About ACE Green Recycling

ACE Green Recycling is a U.S. based innovative battery recycling technology platform which has developed modular, environmentally friendly solutions to recycle various end-of-life Lithium-ion and Lead-acid batteries. As a technology provider, ACE partners with players across the battery materials ecosystem to create localized circular solutions ensuring critical battery materials remain within the countries generating battery waste.

Forward-Looking Statements

This document contains certain forward-looking statements regarding ACE’s technological capabilities and future business aspirations. All statements are based upon current ACE expectations and involve a number of business and technical risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from anticipated results described, implied or projected in any forward-looking statement, including, without limitation, regulatory approvals, unexpected changes in technologies, uncertainties inherent in technological development, scaling and roll out, intellectual property protection, and sources and availability of third-party financing.