CarBatteryReFactory: giving used car batteries a second life


As the number of electric cars increases on European roads, there is a growing interest in finding ways to recycle and reuse old car batteries. The CarBatteryReFactory project, led by FENECON, is manufacturing energy storage systems with batteries for which their initial use in electric cars has ended, but have not yet reached the end of their life cycle.

Used car batteries from different manufacturers and with different age profiles can be combined thanks to flexible hardware and software. The energy storage systems are easy to install and are suitable for use in industry and energy utility sectors. Their carbon footprint is low because no dismantling, rebuilding or partial scrapping is involved. Once a battery pack in the system reaches the end of its life, it can simply be replaced and sent for recycling.

The cutting-edge project secured €4.5 million in funding from the Innovation Fund, one of the world’s largest investment programmes for net-zero and innovative technologies financed by EU Emissions Trading System revenues. Thanks to this support, FENECON, an SME, accelerated the project’s operations by optimising the production process for industrial storage units and managed to complete construction within one year. As a result, the industrial battery storage systems can be produced quicker and on a larger scale. This fosters the development of an efficient market for second-life batteries and adds value to used batteries before the final recycling stage.

When covering peak demand, the use of the battery energy storage systems results in an estimated net absolute emission avoidance of approximately 1.4 Mt CO₂ equivalent over the first 10 years of factory operation. The initial production capacity of these energy storage systems was 200 MWh in 2023 and will increase by 10% per year. One single storage system container with a capacity of 500 kWh is sufficient to cover the average daily electricity consumption of 50 single-family houses in the EU.

The Bavarian-based Iggensbach factory offers over 100 state-of-the-art and future-proof industrial jobs, whereby core competences for engineering and production have been developed in-house. In addition, it establishes a new value chain for storage systems that also contributes to job creation within the supplier network.

The next steps for the project are to increase production volume to full capacity and further optimise the production and assembly processes. FENECON aims to become the European leader in second-life battery storage systems.


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