January 1, 2015: US battery recycler Battery Solutions has entered into an agreement to acquire state-of-the-art battery sorting technology from Sweden-based technology company Refind.
The move makes Battery Solutions the first US company to invest in automated sorting and data collection technology to manage waste batteries. Refind’s system is already in use in three UK plants.
The system from Refind sorts up to 2,500 pounds of batteries per hour and will significantly improve existing sorting capabilities currently used by Battery Solutions.
Batteries are recognized by their visual characteristics and are then separated by air ejectors at a speed of more than 10 batteries per second.
This technology investment increases efficiency and reduces costs while collecting detailed data about the batteries: information about brand, model, size, and age can be retrieved from every single battery. The compiled data will give broader insight and knowledge into the multibillion-dollar US battery market. The two companies have agreed to work closely to further develop the applications for the information collected.
Thomas Bjarnemark, Battery Solutions CEO says: “It’s particularly important as more states and countries realize the environmental and economic benefits of collecting and recycling batteries, especially alkaline.” Hans Eric Melin, CEO of Refind, added: “For Refind, it’s an important first step into the US market with a customer that shares our vision of sorting as an important driver for battery recycling.”
Battery Solutions’ collection process allows customers to put all battery chemistries into one container. When received by Battery Solutions, the batteries must be sorted by chemistry before being recycled, just like sorting paper from plastic in single stream recycling.