Ecocycle’s state branch operations play a key role in ‘pick up’ and collecting batteries for forwarding to the main Ecobatt operation at Campbellfield. Importantly, the group is constantly striving to achieve an integrated ‘end to end’ solution with all its recycled products.
Indeed, Alkaline batteries are recycled with the shredded steel cases shipped to Castings Tasmania for melting into specialised castings for the local and general Australian market. This represents about 30%. of each alkaline battery. Approx. 50% of alkaline batteries generate a substance called ‘Black Mass’ which is used by Castings Tasmania in their furnaces in the production of their product range. Black Mass contains a variety of metal elements including zinc and manganese. The latter is used for strengthening steel.
Battery types for recycling
The various other types of batteries are recycled for copper, lithium, cobalt, and nickel. Importantly many of the best lithium batteries include cobalt and nickel, which can be extracted, recycled, and sold. The high world demand for cobalt and nickel reflects the importance, and need, to recycle these batteries responsibly. It should be noted that each of the battery chemistries has specific recycling processes. This is a key element of the flexibility and range of battery recycling that Ecobatt can process.
New technologies and chemistries will be developed in this fast and ever-changing industry. Importantly there will be a need to recycle these batteries and recover the inherent metal materials contained within them for reuse and refining.