TOKYO, JAPAN - Toyota Motor Corp., Toyota Chemical Engineering Co. Ltd., Sumitomo Metal Mining Co. Ltd. and Primearth EV Energy Co. Ltd. (PEVE) announced the launch of a new business formed to recycle nickel in used hybrid-vehicle nickel-metal-hydride batteries for use in new nickel-metal-hydride batteries.
Previously, nickel-metal-hydride batteries recovered by car dealers and vehicle-dismantling businesses were subjected to reduction treatment, and scrap containing nickel was recycled as a raw material for stainless-steel manufacturing. Now, with the development of high-precision nickel sorting and extraction technology, materials can be introduced directly into the nickel-refining process, thus achieving "battery-to-battery" recycling, Toyota said.
To carry out the business, Toyota has established the Toyota HV Call Center to help recover the batteries. Toyota has also constructed advanced recycling facilities designed for mass production in cooperation with Toyota Chemical Engineering, and is receiving support from Sumitomo Metal Mining concerning the refining of nickel for use in batteries. Toyota is also receiving support from PEVE concerning quality assurance in the manufacture of hybrid-vehicle nickel-metal-hydride batteries.
In addition, making use of trucks on return trips from parts deliveries is planned to reduce environmental impact, including CO2 emissions during transport.
Toyota said it is currently investigating introducing this recycling system overseas.