Challenges in Recycling Spent Lithium-Ion Batteries: Spotlight on Polyvinylidene Fluoride Removal

Mengmeng Wang, Kang Liu, Jiadong Yu, Qiaozhi Zhang, Yuying Zhang, Marjorie Valix, Daniel C.W. Tsang

Research output: Journal article publicationReview articleAcademic researchpeer-review

37 Citations (Scopus)


In the recycling of retired lithium-ion batteries (LIBs), the cathode materials containing valuable metals should be first separated from the current collector aluminum foil to decrease the difficulty and complexity in the subsequent metal extraction. However, strong the binding force of organic binder polyvinylidene fluoride (PVDF) prevents effective separation of cathode materials and Al foil, thus affecting metal recycling. This paper reviews the composition, property, function, and binding mechanism of PVDF, and elaborates on the separation technologies of cathode material and Al foil (e.g., physical separation, solid-phase thermochemistry, solution chemistry, and solvent chemistry) as well as the corresponding reaction behavior and transformation mechanisms of PVDF. Due to the characteristic variation of the reaction systems, the dissolution, swelling, melting, and degradation processes and mechanisms of PVDF exhibit considerable differences, posing new challenges to efficient recycling of spent LIBs worldwide. It is critical to separate cathode materials and Al foil and recycle PVDF to reduce environmental risks from the recovery of retired LIBs resources. Developing fluorine-free alternative materials and solid-state electrolytes is a potential way to mitigate PVDF pollution in the recycling of spent LIBs in the EV era.

Original languageEnglish
Article number2200237
JournalGlobal Challenges
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2023


  • cathode materials
  • circular economy
  • EV battery recycling
  • lithium recovery
  • sustainable waste management

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General


Dive into the research topics of 'Challenges in Recycling Spent Lithium-Ion Batteries: Spotlight on Polyvinylidene Fluoride Removal'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this