Electonics recycler TES has announced investment in battery recovery to boost its annual capacity from the current 15 000 tonnes to 40 000 tonnes.
TES has facilities in Singapore, France, and Shanghai in China and is planning to add production capabilities in Gyeongju, Korea; Rotterdam, Netherlands; Yancheng, China; Newcastle, Australia; and Hungary and Kentucky, USA.
‘The three most important factors for winning the waste battery recycling market are a dense collection network to secure future waste battery volumes, a prime location as a hub, and internalization of rare metal extraction technology,’ says John Oh, chief strategy officer for TES.
‘Together with our parent company, SK ecoplant, we are in a strong position on these points and are well positioned for the global market.’
Demand tripled Demand for lithium-ion batteries used in hybrid and electric vehicles tripled between 2020 and 2020, according to the International Energy Association.
As a result, manufacturers’ demand for lithium exceeded supply in both 2021 and 2022, even though lithium production increased 180%. By recycling more electric vehicle batteries, manufacturers of batteries and electric vehicles will need fewer new raw materials, including lithium, cobalt, and nickel.
TES is convinced on the financial viability of battery recycling with the global market for ‘black mass’ expected to grow sixfold this decade at a compound annual growth rate of about 21%.
The recycler is looking to establish a closed-loop supply chain reclaiming up to 98% of the key raw materials to make new batteries.
‘Sustainability is at the core of everything we do’ Oh says. ‘With this focused investment, TES will continue to embrace the circular economy and preserve resources for industry and for future generations.’