Innovation will improve the quality of recycled aluminum and
allow for more diverse applications, including the production of electric cars
ROCHESTER, NY, 17 August 2023 /PRNewswire/ — REMADE Institute, a 170-member public-private partnership established and partially funded by the US Department of Energy (DOE), today announced a new technology license involving technology developed with REMADE support. The license involves a technological innovation capable of removing metallic impurities from recycled aluminum smelting, thereby improving the quality of the aluminum and allowing it to be used for more diverse applications, including the manufacture of electric vehicles (EV).
The innovation is part of a research and development project that was first funded by REMADE in 2020. The R&D project, “Selective Recovery of Elements from Molten Aluminum Alloys,” is still ongoing and is led by Subodh Das, Ph.D., CEO of Phinix, LLC. REMADE’s technology team oversees the project and ensures it meets the institute’s and DOE’s technology milestones.
“Congratulations to the entire project team, including Phinix’s Dr. Das and our technical team at the Institute,” said REMADE CEO Nabil Nasr. “A new technology license is a tremendous achievement. We believe this technology will be incredibly valuable to US-based aluminum companies, including those that supply the automotive industry. Ultimately, it is another key technology that will accelerate the US transition to a circular economy and help the nation reach its net zero by 2050 goal.”
Details of the technological innovation are the subject of a pending patent and are therefore confidential. Proprietary process benefits include removal of impurities and increased availability and quality of recycled aluminum. These innovations enable aluminum to be used for a wider range of manufacturing applications. The IP has been licensed by Phinix to a domestic recycled (secondary) aluminum producer.
According to the R&D project team, producing recycled aluminum costs less and saves more than 90% of the energy required to produce new (primary) aluminum. Aluminum is one of the world’s most recycled materials, but there is room to increase its recycling rate, cost, recyclability and sustainability. The US Geological Survey estimates that the US consumption of aluminum in 2022 was 5,100 million tonnes (MMT). Of this, about 2,740 MMT was imported, 0,860 MMT was produced from primary ores and the rest 1.5 MMT was produced from scrap. (https://pubs.usgs.gov/periodicals/mcs2023/mcs2023-aluminum.pdf)
Das, the R&D project’s principal investigator, said the research project ultimately seeks to develop technologies to improve the quality and increase the use of recycled aluminum in U.S. manufacturing.
“This technology is capable of significantly benefiting aluminum companies,” he said. “It is able to lower their energy costs, increase their profits and significantly increase the overall value of recycled aluminum.”
REMADE Chief Technology Officer Magdi Azer said the technology license is another milestone for the public-private partnership, which seeks to increase reuse, remanufacturing, recycling and recovery of four energy-intensive materials: metals, including steel and aluminum; polymers, including plastics; fibres, including paper and textiles; and electronic scrap (e-scrap), previously referred to as e-waste.
“REMADE is selective in funding R&D projects that have the greatest potential to reduce energy consumption, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, decrease the use of raw or primary materials and increase the use of recycled or secondary materials,” said Azer. “This particular R&D project is able to develop technology to increase the quality and use of recycled aluminum and, as a result, increase the resilience of the U.S. supply chain and decrease the nation’s dependence on imported virgin aluminum from other countries.”
For more information, contact the REMADE Institute or Phinix directly at [email protected] or [email protected]respectively.
Founded in 2017, REMADE is a 170-member public-private partnership established and partially funded by the US Department of Energy’s Advanced Materials and Manufacturing Technologies Office (AMMTO) with an initial investment of 140 million dollars. REMADE is the only national institute focused exclusively on developing innovative technologies to accelerate America’s transition to a circular economy. In partnership with industry, academia, trade organizations and national laboratories, REMADE enables early-stage applied research and development that will create jobs, dramatically reduce embodied energy and greenhouse gas emissions, and increase the supply and use of recycled materials. For more information about REMADE (Reducate EMbodily energy ONEn.d Dincreasing Emissions), visits www.remadeinstitute.org.
For further information contact:
Megan Connor Murphy
Director, Marketing and Communications
The REMADE Institute
SOURCE REMADE Institute