MRO Magazine

Lithion Technologies completes construction of battery recycling plant

The facility is located in St-Bruno-de-Montarville, near Montreal.

June 17, 2024 | By MRO Staff

Lithion Technologies, a company that develops, deploys, and operates patented technologies to recycle lithium-ion batteries and create a circular supply of their strategic materials, has completed the construction of its first commercial critical mineral extraction plant, Lithion Saint-Bruno, located in St-Bruno-de-Montarville, near Montreal.

Over the past several months, the team reportedly built a lithium-ion battery critical mineral extraction plant. Every piece of equipment has been installed, many of which were tailor-made to suit its unique technologies and processes. The company is now in the commissioning phase to ensure its processes operate safely and effectively. Lithion Saint-Bruno has a team of 20 Lithioneers, and at full capacity, the plant will employ 60 people.

During the plant construction, Lithion’s commercial activities progressed with the signing of multi-year battery feedstock agreements, and the receipt of several batteries. The first battery treatment steps, such as dismantling, have also started. These strategic agreements involve local partners as well as large Canadian, American, and international corporations, all part of the electric vehicle ecosystem.

To create the circularity of battery materials, Lithion has developed a two-step recycling process with an environmental impact significantly smaller than mining. The first step, performed at Lithion Saint-Bruno, is the extraction of the critical minerals concentrate, or black mass, from batteries and non-conforming products from their production. Black mass is made of lithium, nickel, cobalt, manganese, and graphite.

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The second step is a hydrometallurgy process to separate and purify the black mass to produce strategic materials of the highest purity so they can be looped back into the production of new batteries.

“What an exciting achievement to have completed the construction of our first commercial plant,” Lithion president Benoit Couture said. “It’s a major milestone towards the realization of our dream of sustainably closing the loop of battery materials. And this is just the beginning. We will build more recycling plants, supplied by a network of battery collection and storage facilities, across Canada, the United States, and Europe to ensure the energy transition is a sustainable solution for the generations to come.”

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