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Fortum’s battery material recycling facility gets ready to begin operations in 2023 – Staff members moving onsite in December

07 December 2022, 13:00 EET

Harjavalta battery material recycling facility

The construction work and the gradual deployment tests of Fortum’s new battery material recycling facility in Harjavalta, Finland, are being completed according to plan. Staff members will move to the site in December as the last installations are being made. The new state-of-the-art hydrometallurgical plant is on track to start commercial operations in the second quarter of 2023. 

“I’m pleased to say that we have already successfully completed testing of the automation system during a 2-week test period in the summer. Most recently, in November, we have started the process automation signal testing to verify the operation of process equipment such as pumps, mixers, valves and measuring devices from the automation system. Everything is going according to plan and we are very excited to welcome our staff to move into the site during December,” says Tero Holländer, Head of Business Line Batteries at Fortum.

Fortum’s recycling facility under construction is an investment in sustainable solutions for the future. The new facility will significantly increase the recycling capacity of battery materials in Europe. Fortum’s Central European recycling operations currently being prepared to start local recycling operations in Germany will be connected to the fast-growing Finnish sustainable battery raw materials cluster. With these expansions Fortum will help to ease the raw materials gap the European automotive industry is facing.

“Our new hydrometallurgical facility in Harjavalta will efficiently recycle the valuable metals found in the lithium batteries used in electric cars, as well as various waste fractions generated in the battery production chain. Growing the battery recycling industry in Europe is crucial to ensure a sustainable EV and battery sector that can help the EV and battery industry as well as the EU to reach the set policy targets on recycling and to reduce the dependency on imports of battery materials,” notes Holländer.

Fortum’s Harjavalta facility is currently operated as an industrial-scale pilot plant. The nearly completed deployment tests mark the shift towards industrial-scale hydrometallurgical recycling of battery materials. Once completed, the Harjavalta site will be among the largest hydrometallurgical recycling facilities in Europe in terms of recycling capacity.

The office and social space wing will be ready for use in early December. At that time, the entire personnel of the facility can move to the new facility. The commercial operations will begin after the commissioning period in Q2/2023.

Harjavalta battery material recycling facility
Fortum's new hydrometallurcigal recycling facility is getting ready