“We have not thought about reusing car batteries from electric cars. After ten years they are no longer usable for the car, but we can give them a second life as a home battery. But that conversion is not so easy. ”
Different types of car batteries
Engineer Peter Van Hout of UCLL University of Applied Sciences in Diepenbeek wonders what will happen to the many car batteries of electric cars if they are no longer suitable for driving a car. The current lifespan revolves around ten years. Recycling is a possible option, although it is not so obvious in practice. For example, each car manufacturer has its own type of batteries, with different sizes of battery packs and all kinds of powers. These battery packs, in turn, consist of several dozen battery cells, which are not all the same.
Half the price
Still, Van Hout, together with other UCLL researchers, managed to completely disassemble a car battery and convert it into a home battery. With their test set-up, they were able to store energy generated by solar panels in that home battery. This makes it possible to use that electricity at night or at a later time. Although the home battery market is currently on the rise, the current generation of home batteries is not cheap. But the UCLL's recycled model offers hope: "The converted battery would only cost half of today's home batteries," said Van Hout. Finally, he calls on car manufacturers to make international agreements on the dimensions and types of batteries for electric cars, so that they can all be recycled in the same and simple way.