The project has been designed to establish the potential for a new global recycling business.
It aims to re-use the materials from fuel cell membrane electrode assemblies and establish the recovery of them from waste cells as a technical and economic possibility.
Axion claim that by reducing the life-cost of fuel cells and maximising the value of the resources they contain, they can make fuel cells more cost-effective.
Recycling the cells also improves resource-efficiency for the expensive materials they contain.
The project features a new design for recycling so the products are easier to recycle. This involves collecting widely-distributed fuel cells and overcoming the technical hurdles presented in material recovery.
Whilst Axion is controlling the development of primary recycling routes in the project, Technical Fibre Products (TFP) is managing the recovery and re-use of carbon fibres. The project also sees Johnson Matthey Fuel Cells leading on the re-use of materials in fuel cells and directing the final recovery of precious metals.
Further research into the project is currently taking place as Axion hope to develop a take-back system for end-of-life fuel cells from forklift trucks, electrical vehicles and mobile phone masts.
Alongside on-going market investigation, experimental trials are continuing at Axion’s laboratories in Salford.
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