With manufacturing ramping up year by year and policies already looking to get ahead of the large volumes of end-of-life products, the landscape for lithium-ion battery recycling is rapidly changing. pv magazine recently spoke with Mari Lundström, associate professor of chemical and metallurgical engineering at Aalto University, to find out what is needed on the research side for the effective recycling of batteries.
Although self-consumption of solar power is the optimal economic approach, the expense of household batteries at present outweighs the increased ability they offer to use electricity generated on the roof. Whether aggregated ‘virtual batteries’ offer better returns is an open question, due to lack of electricity company transparency.
According to a new study from LUT University, domestic water heating costs may be reduced by combining rooftop PV with geothermal heat pumps. Scientists developed a control method to minimise these costs by taking advantage of cheap spot market electricity and maximised PV power generation, as well as considering heat demand, PV generation forecasts, and heat pump efficiency.
Scientists investigating the aging mechanisms affecting today’s lithium-ion batteries observed that the loss of lithium over time is one of the main causes of performance loss. With this in mind, they developed and tested a “relithiation” process that promises to eliminate much of the cost and complexity from recycling battery components and materials.
A study from Finland’s Lappeenranta University of Technology has predicted solar and other renewables can provide a global energy jobs revolution – just as four European operations revealed recent struggles.
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