group of scientists in research laboratory

INL seeks to find more efficient way to recycle electronic waste

CMI project lead Tedd E. Lister in a interview with television station KIFI Local 8
CMI Project Lead Tedd E. Lister shown in an interview about E-RECOV with television station KIFI Local 8 ABC.

CMI research is featured in a television news report on KIFI Local 8 ABC. The CMI project "Lithium, cobalt & platinum group metals recovery from lithium-ion batteries & e-waste" is led by Tedd Lister at Idaho National Laboratory. His CMI team developed Electrochemical Recycling Electronic Constituents of Value (E-RECOV), which uses an electrochemical cell to efficiently reclaim valuable metals and rare-earth elements from discarded electronic equipment.

For more than half a decade, the team at the Idaho National Laboratory (INL) has been researching more efficient methods for recycling our old electronics. After nearly seven years of research and development, the system they have come up with is called E-RECOV.

Currently, this new system is in the testing phase with two companies who have been able to partner together and fabricate a working model of the system. The goal of the E-RECOV is to dissolve, through a chemical reaction, the base components that make up our old cell phones, TVs, laptops, gaming consoles or other old electronics and make it easier to retrieve the less present gold and palladium and reuse them in other projects.

The testing of this new system is being conducted by Quantum Ventura based in San Jose. They're testing is being done on a lab based in Cason City, Nevada. After a test was completed in January 2022, it was discovered a few more things needed to be ironed out for the system to work at its best. On the experience lead researcher for the project Tedd E. Lister says, "whenever you put any kind of system together, there's always lots of opportunities for things to not work. And they usually they usually don't work right off the bat."

See the full television news story: INL seeks to find more efficient ways to recycle electronic waste

See the Idaho National Laboratory story: What to do with your old phone? INL's E-RECOV might have the answer

group of people in a science laboratory