A paper was recently published, presenting a cycling-insensitive recycling method for producing lithium transition metal oxide from Li-ion batteries using centrifugal gravity separation. This paper features the use of the Falcon UF bench test program on lithium transition metal oxide, which yielded excellent results.

You can read the full paper written by Lei Pan from Michigan Technological University here: https://labs.seprosystems.com/wp-content/uploads/2024/05/Falcon-UF-Paper-053124.pdf

Abstract

The separation and recovery of electrode active materials from Li-ion batteries is a requisite step prior to any downstream hydrometallurgical and direct recycling processes. Prior research efforts into the separation between the two electrode active materials from Li-ion batteries was limited to the froth flotation process; however, any changes to the surface properties of the active materials resulted in an inferior separation performance. In this work, a novel separation method, namely the Falcon Ultra-Fine (UF) centrifugal gravity concentration, is developed to separate electrode active materials from Li-ion batteries. Results obtained with a mixture of pristine lithium transition metal oxides (LTMOs) and graphite showed that the separation between the two materials perform well with over 90% of LTMOs in the concentrate product after one pass in the UF concentrator. Multiple stages of the separation processes enabled a concentration of LTMOs with 99% purity. Results obtained with aged electrode active materials from spent Li-ion batteries showed that the concentrate product consisted of at least 98% by weight of LTMOs. It was observed that there was a misplacement of LTMOs in the overflow product,
which was attributed to the presence of ultrafine LTMOs as well as PVDF-binded cathode agglomerates in the feed. Results of this work demonstrate a viable method for separating mixed electrode active materials and producing high-purity LTMOs, which can be potentially used for the direct recycling of cathode active materials in the manufacturing of new Li-ion batteries.