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Optisort to ’empower’ Swedish battery recycler

Sweden – According to sorting systems specialist Optisort, Sweden’s El-Kretsen e-scrap and batteries recycling scheme will obtain ‘previously unavailable waste battery information’ once an advanced sorting line goes on stream at Swedish waste management player Renova.

The Optisort Battery Sorter (OBS) system uses a combination of computer vision and advanced classification technology. It automatically sorts batteries based on their chemical composition and collects detailed information about the brands, models and types of battery that are being processed. Thus, El-Kretsen will be in a position to monitor closely the 1500 tonnes of batteries going through the Renova installation each year.

‘When the Optisort solution goes live at Renova, we will be able to access detailed information about battery production dates, chemistry, etc. This will provide us with a better understanding of recycling flows and will consequently simplify the entire process,’ says Jan-Olof Eriksson, ceo of El-Kretsen. ‘Optisort’s technology essentially makes recycling more efficient.’

Numerous opportunities

The OBS is designed to ’empower’ the recycler, according to Optisort’s ceo Hans Eric Melin. ‘As batteries can be processed on a case-by-case basis, it opens up numerous business and environmental opportunities for recyclers, compliance schemes and manufacturers,’ he explains. In essence, the system will enable a manufacturer to ‘identify its brand market share in different geographies’, while also allowing it to ‘detect the average life-cycle of a battery and measure its recyclability’.

At present, there are two OBS systems available – one operating at 500 kg and the other 1000 kg per hour. ‘This equates to a speed of 5-6 batteries per second,’ Optisort points out.

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