Because of the popularity of smart phones and tablets, the demand for lithium ion batteries has surged substantially in recent years. Because these devices include hazardous materials that must be properly disposed of to avoid contamination of the environment, recycling these batteries is now more crucial than ever.
Transition metal oxides or phosphates, aluminium, copper, graphite, organic electrolytes containing toxic lithium salts, and other compounds are found in most commercial lithium ion batteries.
As a result, a growing number of researchers are focusing on the recycling and reuse of used lithium ion batteries. However, due to lithium ion batteries' great energy density, superior safety, and low cost, recycling spent lithium ion batteries is difficult.
Lithium-ion batteries are becoming more prevalent. They're already used in cell phones, laptops, consumer electronics, and some industrial applications. Telecom towers, solar storage systems, and electric vehicles are all using them. Battery specialists and environmentalists agree that lithium-ion batteries should be recycled for a variety of reasons. The materials recovered might be used to make new batteries, lowering production costs. Those materials now account for more than half of a battery's cost. Cobalt and nickel, the most expensive components of the cathode, have undergone considerable price swings in recent years.
The first step in recycling a lithium ion battery is to remove any plastic, rubber, or metal parts. Separated from the rest of the waste stream, these parts are sold as raw materials. The next step is to separate all metals, which is often accomplished using electrolysis, which generates an acid solution that dissolves metals while leaving the majority of other components behind.
Batteries can be broken down into groups of comparable elements and reused without further processing. Cobalt and nickel, for example, could be used as semiconductor components or in new batteries. Aluminum is shipped to aluminium smelters, whereas steel is made from manganese and iron. Although chromium is occasionally recovered for use in steel production, it is most usually utilised as a high-purity alloying agent. Because lithium waste does not react with other chemicals, it can be appropriately disposed of in landfills, or it can be resold to manufacturers who will reuse it after separations.
Over the next five years, India's lithium-ion battery industry is predicted to expand rapidly. The National Electric Mobility Mission Plan 2020, which estimates 6-7 million electric vehicles on Indian roads by 2020 and a target of 175 GW renewable energy installation by 2022, is one of the key initiatives made by the Indian government to drive the growth of this sector. According to estimates, India's yearly lithium-ion battery industry would expand at a 37.5 percent compound annual growth rate (CAGR) from now until 2030, when it will reach 132 GWh. The global lithium-ion battery market will have risen from 2.9 gigawatt-hours in 2018 to around 800 gigawatt-hours by 2030.
In the future years, India's desire to shift from fossil fuel-based vehicles to electric vehicles (EVs) will dramatically raise demand for batteries. Among the several extant battery technologies, the lithium-ion battery (LiB) is now the most suited option. Valuable metals such as cobalt, nickel, manganese, lithium, graphite, and aluminium can be recovered up to 90% with today's recycling technology. These account for roughly 50-60% of the entire battery cost, with cobalt being the most costly.