The Department of Science & Technology (DST) under India’s Ministry Of Science & Technology seeks to fund promising R&D projects in solar panel and battery storage waste disposal and recycling. Call for proposals closes on November 15.
Scientists at the Indian Institute of Technology in New Delhi have taken a close look at the potential impact of growing volumes of PV waste and conducted surveys which suggest a lot more work is needed from manufacturers and policymakers to develop management systems for end-of-life PV products.
Researchers from China are proposing to use spent battery lead for creating a perovskite that can be used in the production of solar cells that are based on this promising material. The proposed one-step process, which was tested in the production of a 17.38% efficient perovskite heterojunction cell, is said to be cheaper and less energy-intensive than other recycling processes for waste lead from lead-acid batteries.
Establishment of an R&D cell for battery recycling and online tracking of the collection and re-processing of used batteries are highlights of the draft rules which seek to ensure safe disposal and organized recycling of batteries at the end of their life.
Any proponent can install such facility in the country, said Minister of State for Environment, Forest And Climate Change, noting that technologies are available for complete recycling of lithium batteries to recover valuable metals.
An Indian Institute of Technology research team analyzed around 300 studies about PV panel waste containing carcinogenic metals. The researchers said solar module recycling is not economically profitable and policy support is necessary to avoid panels being dumped in landfill.
TES issued a press release announcing the new facilities that is light on detail but claimed the plants would position it as ‘a leader’ in battery recycling. The company also announced an intent to move into the reuse of spent electric vehicle batteries in commercial and residential applications.
The recycling market will experience a tenfold expansion between last year and 2030, driven by EV battery usage and portable electronics. Retrieving valuable metals and minerals is becoming a high priority and several dozen companies are already in position for the first big wave of end-of-life batteries.
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