Proposal could divert a dangerous waste stream while producing low-cost photovoltaics
This could be a classic win-win solution: A system proposed by researchers at MIT recycles materials from discarded car batteries — a potential source of lead pollution — into new, long-lasting solar panels that provide emissions-free power.
The system is described in a paper in the journal Energy and Environmental Science, co-authored by professors Angela M. Belcher and Paula T. Hammond, graduate student Po-Yen Chen, and three others. It is based on a recent development in solar cells that makes use of a compound called perovskite — specifically, organolead halide perovskite — a technology that has rapidly progressed from initial experiments to a point where its efficiency is nearly competitive with that of other types of solar cells.
“It went from initial demonstrations to good efficiency in less than two years,” says Belcher, the W.M. Keck Professor of Energy at MIT. Already, perovskite-based photovoltaic cells have achieved power-conversion efficiency of more than 19 percent, which is close to that of many commercial silicon-based solar cells.
Initial descriptions of the perovskite technology identified its use of lead, whose production from raw ores can produce toxic residues, as a drawback. But by using recycled lead from old car batteries, the manufacturing process can instead be used to divert toxic material from landfills and reuse it in photovoltaic panels that could go on producing power for decades.
Amazingly, because the perovskite photovoltaic material takes the form of a thin film just half a micrometer thick, the team’s analysis shows that the lead from a single car battery could produce enough solar panels to provide power for 30 households.
The Latest on: Recycling old batteries
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The Latest on: Recycling old batteries
- How To Recycle Old Electronics When It's Time For An Upgradeon February 18, 2020 at 7:00 pm
To avoid letting this happen, there are tons of ways you can ensure that your old laptop, iPad, iPhone, or other tech product will be re-used ... Call2Recycle is the country's largest battery ...
- 7 Everyday Items In Your Home That You Should Be Recyclingon February 18, 2020 at 10:51 am
You can easily keep a little container or jar for old batteries for recycling. These can be recycled at any e-waste recycling center. It’s worth saving up a big enough container to warrant the trip.
- Manitobans mark National Battery Dayon February 18, 2020 at 8:52 am
February 18 is National Battery Day, a time to recycle and give new life to your old batteries.
- Where are your batteries going? P.E.I. doing its part to recycle batterieson February 18, 2020 at 7:12 am
The metals pulled from the old batteries are reused to make new batteries ... Batteries can be hard to see in blue bags and people should put them in battery recycling collection boxes, she said.
- Amazon's Disposable Tech Is Waste Even as It Leaves the Factoryon February 18, 2020 at 12:45 am
Need a new battery for your old but still functional Kindle Paperwhite? That’s too bad, Amazon doesn’t sell them directly (though you can roll the dice on a number of third-party vendors). The same ...
- Canadians recycle nearly 3 million kilograms of batterieson February 11, 2020 at 12:00 pm
... Canadians are already aware of their ability to recycle batteries, and with 9000 collections sites across Canada, Call2Recycle Canada has been making it easier for Canadians to recycle their old ...
- GM’s director of battery cell engineering: We’re nowhere near the bottom of the price curveson February 10, 2020 at 3:09 pm
We’re working on battery recycling so that we mitigate that a little bit ... It’s mostly larger scale — nothing fancy, just good old engineering and iterating as a learning organization. We’re ...
- How to recycle your used batterieson February 10, 2020 at 3:00 pm
Nearly 80 per cent of Canadians are aware that old batteries need to be recycled, and roughly 70 per cent are actually making the effort to recycle their batteries, he explains. Still, there’s ...
- Recycle your e-waste for free: What to do with your old phones, laptops and batterieson February 8, 2020 at 3:21 am
Recycling electronics is just as important as recycling cans, paper and glass. Devices can pile up over the years -- batteries, cables and old phones and computers for nostalgic reasons, or because ...
- Plea for Aberdeenshire residents to avoid fire risk by properly recycling batterieson February 7, 2020 at 10:07 pm
The appeal comes after recent nationwide research highlighted the dangers of not disposing of old batteries correctly ... encouraging residents to pop their redundant batteries into freely-available ...
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