In the future, the entire lifecycle of large batteries, such as those installed in electric cars, will be stored digitally. However, for the industry, the new European Union (EU) battery passport is not only a legal requirement, it is also an opportunity: modern data management makes it possible to comprehensively analyze and evaluate the continuous flow of information, starting with raw material extraction to use to recycling - thus creating more innovative products and more efficient value chains.
"Batteries with a planned service life of up to 20 years for larger batteries generate large amounts of data, covering raw material extraction, production, various usage options, and final recycling options. At the initiative of the EU, this data will have to be stored in the future," says Jens Rollenmüller, Managing Director of Aras Germany. Businesses could use this regulatory obligation to their advantage and generate valuable information and analysis from the collected data to optimize their own value chain. As a suitable option for this, Rollenmüller recommends a product lifecycle management (PLM) solution that can bring together all the design details, life phases, and usage information of the batteries via a digital thread.
According to Rollenmüller, the life phases of power storage devices are not limited to production and recycling, but also include various alternative uses. "After about ten years, batteries from electric cars have reached the end of their first life. With slight modifications, the batteries could be given a second life, for example, in charging stations for e-cars or as storage for private solar systems. By extending their useful life in this way, these batteries could be useful for 20 years before being dismantled and reused as part of a recycling strategy."
Playing out recycling scenarios digitally
In order for businesses to be able to track the various phases in the lifecycle of a battery and integrate them into an overall strategy, including upstream and downstream processes, Rollenmüller believes that a flexible solution is necessary. "With PLM, businesses integrate data from the design and manufacturing phases of a product as well as information from the supply and recycling chain. Data from the various usage phases can also be easily integrated via interfaces. This gives the company an overall picture of the battery, including an option of simulation analysis, for example, to digitally run through various recycling scenarios.”
Jens Rollenmüller continues, "By linking this digital thread with operating and performance data over the entire lifecycle, businesses can gain an information advantage to implement drastic energy savings or innovations through new product developments. In short, the industrial circular economy is now finally moving from theory to practice."
Background: EU battery passport compulsory from 2027 onwards
According to the plans of the European Union, businesses will have to provide extensive data on the batteries they manufacture or sell beginning in 2027. In addition to information on the contained materials and the origin of the raw materials, data on the current condition and recycling options will also be collected. The goal is to digitally map the entire lifecycle and design the value creation based on closed-loop principles. The battery pass thus offers the possibility of traceability of all raw materials, materials and components used, as well as dynamic deployment control in order to reuse the batteries at different locations.
Aras provides the most powerful low-code platform with applications to design, build, and operate complex products. Its technology enables the rapid delivery of flexible, upgradeable solutions that build business resilience. Aras’ platform and product lifecycle management applications connect users in all disciplines and functions to critical product data and processes across the lifecycle and throughout the extended supply chain. Airbus, Audi, Denso, Honda, Kawasaki, Microsoft, Mitsubishi, and Nissan are using the platform to manage complex change and traceability. Visit www.aras.com to learn more and follow us on Twitter and LinkedIn.
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