Fortum Battery Recycling has started to examine the feasibility of installing a production facility for sustainable secondary battery materials in the industrial area of Artern, Thuringia, Germany. The black mass facility will be Fortum Battery Recycling’s second hub in Central Europe, demonstrating the company’s strong growth path. In March, Fortum Battery Recycling started its first commercial operations in Germany, Kirchardt, as the first mechanical processing plant was opened. In April, the company started operating a hydrometallurgical facility in Harjavalta, Finland that is today Europe's largest closed-loop recycling facility.
“We aim to become a remarkable provider of sustainable recycled raw materials for the European battery value chain and want to be closer to our central-European customers. We see a lot of potential in the Artern region and have started to discuss a development plan for the production of black mass with the local authorities,” says Tero Holländer, Head of Business Line, Batteries, Fortum Battery Recycling.
The industrial area of Artern/Thuringia is located in the middle of Germany, with short distances to the central battery and automobile companies. The regional authorities and stakeholders have been swift and highly professional in the initial talks paving the way for the planning of the settlement.
The state of Thuringia aims to cover the entire value chain, from basic and applied research to the production of mobile and stationary batteries, and recycling, as one of the few German federal states. Thuringia's Minister for Economic Affairs Wolfgang Tiefensee welcomes the plans and confirms the state's support for the planned settlement. He says he is pleased that Fortum's investment project is now taking concrete shape since the first contact with the company in April 2022.
"Thuringia is a major hub for batteries in Germany, which makes recycling technologies and investments in this sector very attractive to us. Fortum brings considerable expertise in the recovery of valuable rare metals from automotive and industrial batteries to the area. This final step in the life cycle of batteries is an important prerequisite for the success of the green transformation of the economy and society", Tiefensee says.
“We are discussing the potential development plans with Fortum Battery Recycling and are pleased with how the planning advances. The city of Artern would gladly welcome the estimated 70 new jobs that Fortum Battery Recycling’s site could generate at the region”, says Torsten Blümel, Mayor of Artern.
Fortum Battery Recycling’s operations cover all the necessary treatment and production steps at an industrial scale to achieve the highest recycling rates and provide a closed loop for battery recycling along the entire value chain in Europe: pre-treatment services in Kirchardt, Germany, and mechanical process in Ikaalinen, and hydrometallurgical metal recovery in Harjavalta, Finland. The central-European growth plans will help to meet battery manufacturers' rising demand for recycled battery materials.
“We are on a strong growth path, and by 2030, we aim to develop our recycling capacity to handle over 200 000 tonnes of battery waste and aim to open two more hydrometallurgical facilities in Europe and some seven mechanical units producing black mass for the hydrometallurgical sites. We want to help the entire industry produce more sustainable batteries in Europe,” says Holländer.
More information about Fortum Battery Recycling
As a clean energy company, Fortum has been providing waste and recycling services since 2016 and has expertise in the management of both hazardous and difficult waste streams. Fortum's battery recycling technology is backed by in-house research and development, and the company is continuously exploring opportunities to expand its recycling capacity in Europe. In March 2023, Fortum Battery Recycling started EV battery recycling operations in Kirchardt, Germany. With the facility in Germany, Fortum is able to offer its services for the collection and processing of end-of-life batteries and production scrap close to central European customers. The hub in Germany can pre-treat over 3,000 tonnes of batteries per year and is connected to the Harjavalta site where the hydrometallurgical process takes place.
Frank Stumpf, Operations Director, Fortum Battery Recycling, frank [dot] stumpf [at] fortum [dot] com (frank[dot]stumpf[at]fortum[dot]com), tel. +152 28 44 97 62
Fortum Battery Recycling
Fortum Battery Recycling is part of the Fortum portfolio. Fortum Battery Recycling is a specialist in recycling of valuable metals in ev batteries. It’s low-CO2 battery recycling solution makes it possible to recycle over 80% of the battery with 95% of the valuable metals contained in the battery's black mass to be put back into circulation. fortum.com/batteryrecycling
Fortum is a Nordic energy company. Our purpose is to power a world where people, businesses and nature thrive together. We are one of the cleanest energy producers in Europe and our actions are guided by our ambitious environmental targets. We generate and deliver clean energy reliably and help industries to decarbonise their processes and grow. Our core operations in the Nordics comprise of efficient, CO2-free power generation as well as reliable supply of electricity and district heat to private and business customers. For our ~5 000 employees, we commit to be a safe, and inspiring workplace. Fortum's share is listed on Nasdaq Helsinki. fortum.com