Battery Manufacturing and Recycling

Lithium recrystallization and recovery of valuable metals

From electronics to electric vehicles, the world increasingly runs on lithium ion technology. Saltworks’ advanced water processing and resource extraction technologies contribute to multiple parts of the lithium value chain, including recycling lithium ion batteries to close the loop on valuable production materials including lithium, cobalt, and nickel.

Lithium Ion Batteries 

As major auto manufacturers rapidly shift from the combustion engine to lithium ion batteries, the economics of lithium ion battery manufacturing and recycling are swiftly changing:

  • Increasing demand for valuable, reusable components
  • Increasing supply of recycling materials as both the size and quantity of available end-of-life batteries grow
  • Technological developments in chemical processes and automation.

Besides our successes in lithium refining applications, Saltworks’ chemical, membrane, and thermal technologies also add value to lithium ion battery manufacturing and recycling operators. In particular, the extraction and recovery of valuable metals such as cobalt and nickel are promising, as well as LiOH recrystallization.

A photo of workers recycling a lithium ion electric vehicle battery
Image of the lithium element from the periodic table as used in electric vehicle batteries
Image of cobalt element from the periodic table as used in electric vehicle batteries
Image of nickel element from the periodic table as used in electric vehicle batteries

Valuable Metals, Sulfuric Acid & Sulfates

To recover valuable metals such as cobalt and nickel, some operators

  • mechanically break down spent batteries into a battery powder of cathode and anode materials
  • leach metals from the powder using sulfuric acid and a reducing agent
  • precipitate the resulting metal sulfates as solids

With valuable metals now in solution, Saltworks’ smart chemical conversion processes help recover ions of value, while our SaltMaker family crystallizes the solids. During the process, we help clients recover clean water for re-use.

Recycling Battery Nickel: Membrane ZLD

The SaltMaker ChilledCrys system selectively precipitates metal sulfates that have a steep temperature-solubility curve, such as nickel sulfate. It also recovers sodium sulfate from wastewater.


If recycling metals from lithium ion batteries, ChilledCrys can continually separate and remove water and nickel sulfate solids, achieving zero liquid discharge (ZLD) without expensive chemical consumption or evaporation processes.

Process flow diagram of a SaltMaker ChilledCrys system
Process flow diagram of a SaltMaker ChilledCrys system
3D Render of a SaltMaker MVR evaporator

SaltMaker MVR

The SaltMaker MVR is a forced circulation MVR that concentrates recovered brines and crystallizes solid products from solution. Built-in self-cleaning ensures reliability at optimal capacity while producing a high-purity solid product.


We can engineer an MVR into your total process flow, including consideration of upstream membrane and chemical systems.

Wastewaters & Acid Reuse

After recovering the high value components of spent lithium ion batteries, most operators will be left with a complex wastewater that requires treatment. We can help with that too, even recovering freshwater and acid while we do it. Our electrodialysis reversal system, FlexEDR, outfitted with proton selective IonFlux Membranes, recovers and purifies acid, reducing chemical costs and waste.


Saltworks is focused on helping lithium ion battery recycling operators recover more metals, and improve their purity and yields. To learn more, contact our lithium industry experts.

A photo of a Saltworks engineer inspecting pilot plant operations

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Photo of battery-grade lithium solids prepared in Saltworks' Lithium Test Centre.

Lithium Test Centre

Saltworks’ Lithium Test Centre combines expertise and industry-leading technology to provide innovative solutions for processing lithium resources into battery-grade outputs. The Centre is dedicated to de-risking lithium processing projects and accelerating full-scale implementation.

Photo of a full-scale SaltMaker ChilledCrys skid

Lithium & Nickel Crystallizers for the EV Battery Industry

Saltworks has shipped two SaltMaker MVR crystallizers and a SaltMaker ChilledCrys to the electric vehicle (EV) battery industry. These full-scale systems will play an essential role in the production of lithium and nickel—two critical elements in EV batteries.

Image depicting a battery

99.9% Purity Battery-Grade Lithium Hydroxide

Saltworks is pleased to announce the production of battery-grade lithium hydroxide from an industrial wastewater. Saltworks’ process harvests lithium hydroxide solids that reach or exceed battery-grade specifications.

Photo of an electric vehicle with a lithium ion battery charging

Lithium Extraction and Refining

Saltworks brings water mining expertise and advanced desalination technologies to our lithium clients, offering solutions for concentrating, refining, and converting low-grade lithium sources to battery-grade product. We offer higher purity and lower energy processing technology, that boosts yield, removes unit operations, and reduces cost.