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Electric vehicles – Rechargeable batteries and electric traction motors

  • Health and safety
  • Land-use planning
  • Permitting processes / policy integration
  • Reporting official statistics
  • Socio-economic and environmental impact assessments

Challenge the practice is addressing: Rechargeable batteries and electric traction motors are affecting the future demand of critical raw materials. Li-ion batteries will not satisfy the needs for the increasing demand for higher energy density and power density batteries. Therefore, solid-state batteries with solid electrolytes are considered to be an emerging technology due to improving safety and high power density and energy. Electric traction motors are the other key component of EVs. Many EVs employ rare earth permanent magnet to achieve high performance. NdFeB based permanent magnet is the most commercially important permanent magnet.

Concrete practice to achieve the expected goal: Practices to deal with the increasing demand of critical raw materials include developing cost efficient recycling processes that could minimize the environmental effects compared to primary production. Quantity of REE materials available for recycling is unknown so there is a need to close the knowledge gap. Substitution of critical materials represents an important approach to reducing any potential risk to their supply and possibly demand within a shorter time frame than, for instance, recovering them from end-of-life products.

Expected impact/goal of the practice: The broad use of renewable and carbon-free energy sources in the transport sector could help the EU targets on CO2 emissions reduction. The expected impact is to lower the dependency on other countries regarding the supply of raw materials and to improve current recycling techniques to meet the high demand for raw materials. Solid-state batteries (SSBs) with solid electrolytes rather than liquid ones are considered to be an emerging technology in the field of EV batteries.

Who is the target user group of the practice/intervention or implementing the practice/intervention? Target user group are industry.

Overview of Raw Materials Sector in Circular Economy and Trends in Technology and Business Fields (pages: 69, 70, 72, 73, 74, 78)
Data item type
Practice base
Practice type
Report / document
Learning relevance
Case study
Metalliferous minerals
Extractive life-cycle
Post-exploitation phase (i.e. rehabilitation)
Sustainability scope
Role and indicators for an inclusive Green Economy
Extractives' role in closing cycles
Waste management
System change potential
environmental friendly cost efficient recycling process; better management of RE stocks
increasing RE recycling rates