El-Kretsen becomes the world’s first ever recycling scheme to gain access to battery brand, age and chemistry data using Optisort technology
Gothenburg, Sweden, July 4 2013 – Optisort, an industry pioneer in efficient waste sorting systems, today announced that El-Kretsen, a Swedish not-for-profit recycling scheme, will be gaining insight into previously unavailable waste battery information following the commissioning of a new sorting line at Swedish waste management company, Renova. Optisort’s system automatically sorts batteries based on their chemical composition and collects detailed information about the brands, models and types of batteries that are being processed.
In September 2012, G&P Batteries in the West Midlands, UK, became the first recycler to deploy the Optisort Battery Sorter (OBS). In May 2013, Renova, a Swedish waste management company, will follow suit and ‘go live’ with an annual 1,500 tonnes capacity system from Optisort. El-Kretsen will monitor the installation at Renova to compile detailed information about battery chemistries and the brand, model and age of the individual batteries being processed.
The information garnered by the OBS provides waste management companies and industry associations with a better understanding of battery recycling flows. Jan-Olof Eriksson, CEO of El-Kretsen AB, said: “When the Optisort solution goes live at Renova, we will be able to access detailed information about battery production dates, chemistry, model and brand. This data will provide us with a better understanding of recycling flows and will consequently simplify the entire process. Optisort’s technology essentially makes recycling more efficient.”
The OBS uses a combination of computer vision and advanced classification technology. Each battery is identified based on its brand, model, year and chemistry. Once the data is processed, batteries are then separated using compressed air techniques. The system is flexible and can easily be adapted to different sorting requirements; in Sweden, for example, some zinc carbon batteries are known to have high mercury or cadmium values, which would result in them being separated from ordinary zinc carbon/zinc manganese batteries.
Hans Eric Melin, CEO of Optisort, said: “As batteries can be processed on a case-by-case basis, it opens up numerous business and environmental opportunities for recyclers, compliance schemes and manufacturers. In essence, the system will enable manufacturers to identify its brand market share in different geographies, while also enabling them to detect the average life cycle of a battery and measure its recyclability.”
Melin concluded: “Ultimately, our technology empowers recyclists and provides them with data that was previously unavailable, effectively opening up new revenue and market opportunities.”
With two models available, the OBS operates at either 500 kg or 1,000 kg per hour. This equates to a speed of 5-6 batteries per second. In 2013, three new machines are expected to be commercially released.
Optisort provides the recycling industry with intelligent systems for the sorting of waste and end-of-life products that enables organizations to understand the value of a recycled product based on knowledge of what's inside it. With Optisort’s systems, recyclers can significantly increase revenues, cut operational costs and gain completely new revenue sources. At the heart of the Optisort system is an advanced classification technology which enables recognition of individual objects, and a system for connecting the classified data with information such as chemical compound, manufacturer, brand, price and date of when it was placed on the market. Based in Gothenburg, Sweden, Optisort employs 10 people with mixed backgrounds such as computer science, mechatronics, environmental science and sociology. Everybody at Optisort, shares the vision to cut the waste out of the waste industry and turn it into a real raw material market.
El-Kretsen is a business services company for the collection and recycling of electrical and electronic products and batteries. El-Kretsen is owned by 20 business associations and is run on a not-for-profit basis as a compliance scheme. El-Kretsen currently has 1,300 affiliated companies for electrical and electronic products and 700 customers that align with its procedures for batteries.
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For further information please contact:
Hans Eric Melin, CEO Optisort AB
Phone +46 733 800 371