CircuBAT: Swiss circular economy model for automotive lithium batteries

The research project CircuBAT aims to create a circular business model for the production, application and recycling of lithium-ion batteries used for mobility purposes.


  • Lead school School of Engineering and Computer Science
  • Institute Institute for Energy and Mobility Research IEM
    Intelligente industrielle Systeme (I3S)
  • Research unit IEM / Batteries and storage systems
  • Funding organisation Innosuisse
  • Duration (planned) 01.01.2022 - 31.12.2025
  • Project management Prof. Dr. Andrea Vezzini
  • Head of project Prof. Dr. Andrea Vezzini
  • Project staff Viktor Franz Hangartner
  • Partner Centre Suisse d'Electronique et de
    Ostschweizer Fachhochschule
    Switzerland Innovation Park
    Universität St. Gallen
    Standortförderung Kanton Bern
    BKW Energie AG
    Bühler AG
    E-Force One AG
    ESM Foundation
    FPT Motorenforschung AG
    Green Cubes Technology GmbH
    iBAT Association
    Imerys Technology Center Switzerland
    Indrivetec AG
    Kyburz Switzerland AG
    Leclanché SA
    LIDL Schweiz AG
    Mobility Genossenschaft
    Die Schweizerische Post AG
    Schweizerische Normen-Vereinigung SNV
    Société Mont-Soleil
    Stiftung Auto Recycling Schweiz
    sun2wheel AG
    Touring Club Schweiz
    Thömus AG
    upVolt GmbH
  • Keywords Circular economy, e-mobility, sustainability, recycling, reuse


Electric vehicles are key to making mobility more environmentally friendly. Their core – the lithium-ion battery – in particular offers great potential in order to further improve their ecological balance over the entire life cycle. This is where CircuBAT comes in. Over the next four years, the research project aims to create a sustainable circular business model for lithium-ion batteries used in mobility.

Course of action

The CircuBAT project focuses on finding solutions that boost sustainability in all phases of a lithium-ion battery’s life cycle. This includes extending the lifespan of batteries during their first application. Researchers hope to achieve this by developing optimal charging and discharging strategies as well as new concepts for battery construction that make repairs easy. In addition, the project intends to put batteries to use as stationary energy storage systems after they are retired from their first mobility-related application. It therefore looks at the best ways of integrating these batteries at a local level and ensuring their safe and efficient operation. Lastly, the researchers are looking for solutions for demanufacturing batteries and recovering materials that enable large quantities of high-quality secondary raw materials to be used to produce new batteries. On top of these technical issues, the project examines socio-economic aspects and holistic business models. CircuBAT will therefore play a key role in decarbonising mobility in Switzerland and promoting the use of renewable energy.

Kreislaufgrafik zum Projekt CircuBAT.
CircuBAT sucht Optimierungsmöglichkeiten in allen Lebensabschnitten der Batterie.

This project contributes to the following SDGs

  • 7: Affordable and clean energy
  • 9: Industry, innovation and infrastructure
  • 11: Sustainable cities and communities
  • 13: Climate action