From raw materials and environmentally friendly production processes to recycling and second life: The circular value creation of batteries has enormous ecological and economic potential. The 17th MEET Academy Online on 27 May 2021 focused on key factors for companies and the development of new business models. With more than 70 participants, the speakers Jun.-Prof. Dr Stephan von Delft, junior professor at the Institute for Business Management, Department of Chemistry and Pharmacy at the University of Münster, and Dr-Ing. Georg Timmel, Plant Technology Department at REMONDIS Assets & Services GmbH, discussed how the gap between the increasing demand for batteries and the comparatively low recycling rate can be closed.
Recycling as a Key Topic in Science and Industry
In his presentation “Discovering circular business models for electric vehicle batteries”, Jun.-Prof. Dr Stephan von Delft focused on the requirements for profitable new business models in circular value creation. Key factors include a high level of customer orientation, strong cooperations and a high degree of digitalisation. Furthermore, new business models must emerge from a mass of ideas: It is worthwhile to start with many ideas in order to find the one business model that can be transferred to the market.
Dr-Ing. Georg Timmel, Plant Technology Department at REMONDIS Assets & Services GmbH, then examined the practical perspective. He discussed the potentials and challenges for the recycling industry. Timmel argued for a deposit system to increase the collection rate of used batteries. He also addressed the challenges of disassembly: both traction batteries and batteries from consumer electronics are usually disassembled by hand. An automation of the processes is urgently needed, but so far only possible in rare cases and linked to a specific manufacturer.
In the discussion panel, speakers and participants from science and practice explored the question of whether design specifications for batteries were possible in order to simplify disassembly. The need to establish a circular economy in Europe to avoid dependencies on other markets was also intensively discussed.
Next MEET Academy in November 2021
The 17th MEET Academy will take place in November 2021 - probably as an online event. The topic will be announced soon.