Improved critical materials recovery from LIB black mass by MSX 

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Nickel sulfate salt produced after MSX separation

CMI researchers at Oak Ridge National Laboratory and Idaho National Laboratory conducted the activity for this highlight

Improved continuous process for LIB metal recovery


  • Demonstrated integration of additional Membrane Solvent Extraction (MSX) module for removal of Al, Fe, Mn, Zn and Cu in a single stage prior to MSX recovery of Co and Ni (two separate modules).
  • Battery materials were recovered with a 99 - 99.99 wt.% purity required for remanufacturing of electric vehicle (EV) batteries.

Significance and Impact

  • Separation of battery materials from black mass is challenging due to complexity and diversity of sources.
  • Ability to implement additional modules for targeted separations  in continuous in-line system provides robustness. Removal of all impurities in a single stage improves process efficiency.

Hub Goals Addressed
Win industry adoption of one technology related to recycling or reuse for lithium and cobalt

Nickel sulfate salt produced after MSX separation
Nickel sulfate salt produced after MSX separation