Lithium (Li) is primarily found in mineral resources, brines, and seawater. Extraction of Li from mineral ore deposits is expensive and energy-intensive. Li-ion batteries (LIBs) are certainly one of the important alternatives to lessen the dependence on fossil fuel resources. The global demand for LIBs for portable electrical and electronic equipment (EEE) and EVs have increased significantly, and the amount of spent LIBs (S-LIBs) is rising logarithmically. S-LIBs contain both hazardous heavy metals and toxic organic chemicals that create a serious threat to human health and the ecosystem. The current position requires the recycling of S-LIBs indispensable for the protection of the environment and the recycling of scarce raw materials from economic aspects. In this manuscript, recent developments and state-of-the-art technologies for LIB recycling were focused on and reviewed comprehensively. Pretreatment methods (such as discharging, dismantling, cathode active material (CAM) removal, binder elimination methods, classification, and separation) for S-LIBs are introduced, and all available and novel technologies that are used in different physical and chemical recovery processes are summarized and compared. The pretreatment process in LIB recycling can both improve the recovery rate of the valuable components and significantly lessen the subsequent energy consumption. Notably, pretreatment, metal extraction, and product preparation stages play vital roles in all LIB recovery processes, based on pyrometallurgy, hydrometallurgy, biometallurgy, direct recycling, and mechanical treatment and water leaching. The main goal of this review is to address the novel S-LIB materials' current recycling research status and innovations for integrated, eco-friendly, economic, low carbon, and clean energy technologies. In the end, different industrial recycling processes are compared, existing challenges are identified and suggestions and perspectives for future LIBs recycling applications are highlighted.
This is an open access article under the CC BY-NC-ND license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/).