Digital Battery Passport

tracking batteries in a circular economy

European Green Deal

The EU is striving to be the first climate-neutral continent. In order to overcome the challenges of climate change and environmental destruction, the European Green Deal is intended to transform the EU into a resource-efficient economic zone.

Several initiatives and programs are being implemented as part of these efforts. Of particular interest here is the Sustainable Products Initiative (SPI) launched in March 2022, which also includes a proposal for the Ecodesign for Sustainable Products Regulation (ESPR).

The ESPR provides for the introduction of digital product passports to promote the move towards a circular economy. These product passports will gradually become mandatory for various product categories. The digital battery passport is therefore a kind of pioneer and batteries are one of the first product categories for which such a digital passport will soon be required.

In very short:

  • From February 18, 2027, industrial, EV*- and LMT**-batteries with a capacity >2 kWh must be electronically registered with a battery passport.
    *EV: electric vehicles (batteries for cars)  |  ** LMT: light means of transport (batteries for e-bikes, e-scooter and similar)
  • The manufacturer or importer is responsible for ensuring that the battery passport is implemented properly.
  • The passport must contain specific information about the batteries, but also about the ESG requirements, and provide battery handling instructions for both second/third use and recycling.

 

“EU rules on batteries aim to make batteries sustainable throughout their entire life cycle – from the sourcing of materials to their collection, recycling and repurposing. In the current energy context, the new rules promote the development of a competitive sustainable battery industry, which will support Europe’s clean energy transition and independence from fuel imports.”

(Source & read more: European Commission: Ensuring that batteries placed on the EU market are sustainable and circular throughout their whole life cycle.)

  • Batteries must be easily removable and replaceable.
  • Standards to avoid social and ecological risks (in raw material extraction as well as in production) must be adhered to.
  • Expectedly from 2031, batteries
    >2 kWh must contain a minimum proportion of recycled raw materials: cobalt 16%, lead 85%, lithium 6%, nickel 6%.
  • From 2027, all of these aspects must be carefully documented in a digital battery passport:

    • Information about the CO2 footprint of production
    • Information about the battery, its performance, durability and chemical composition
    • Information about recyclability and disposal

Stickers with individual ID, serial number, QR code and other information must be placed directly on each individual battery.

If you scan the QR code, you will be taken to the digital product passport for the respective battery.*

*Visible information can be restricted depending on the user group.

The specific data requirements are not yet finalized but still under discussion and may vary depending on battery type and application.

Several proposals and draft documents offer insights into what the mandatory data might include:

  • Battery identification
  • Material composition
  • Performance
  • Characteristics
  • Origin and supply chain
  • End-of-life information including recycling instructions

 

Possible additional data to be recorded:

  • Information on safety checks
  • Maintenance and repair logs, spare parts information
  • Information on capacity loss over time, charge/discharge cycles
  • Warranty and guarantee information

 

Data security and accessibility are crucial aspects, and this is why we count on distributed ledger technology.

  • Future-proof architecture: Batteries that are subject to the EU regulation are produced all over the world and therefore in different jurisdictions. This must be taken into account, as must the fact that battery technologies are constantly evolving, as are the business models associated with them or based on them. The system architecture of a digital battery passport must therefore take into account as many conceivable scenarios as possible and be flexible enough to map future changes as simply and dynamically as possible.

  • Interoperability: Throughout the entire life cycle of the battery, a wide variety of stakeholders must be able to view data, some of which is highly sensitive, and exchange data and documents while complying with organizational and regulatory requirements. Compliance with formal data standards and norms to be defined is just as essential a requirement as the consideration of security standards, not least in the highly automated processes between different (sub)systems.

  • Timeline/roadmap: Not all requirements have been finalized, let alone all (technical) questions about the digital battery passport answered, and yet a fixed introduction date of February 18, 2027 has already been set. It is therefore important to keep a close eye on developments and decisions in order to be able to respond quickly to newly defined requirements and specifications.

If you need more information on the Digital Battery Passport, you are welcome to download our presentation on this topic. Just fill out the form below and you will receive a download link.

Of course you can also contact us at any time.

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    FAQ | Digital Battery Passport

    A digital battery passport is an electronic document that tracks a battery’s life cycle. It stores important information like composition, production, usage, and recycling.
    The EU is aiming for a more sustainable and circular battery economy. The passports are intended to promote environmentally friendly battery design and improve recycling processes. The life cycle of a battery should be extended as far as possible, and the recycling of components and raw materials should be as simple as possible – and well documented in the battery passport.
    As of February 2027, all industrial, EV (electric vehicle) and LMT (light means of transport) batteries exceeding 2kWh capacity on the EU market will need a passport.
    The responsibility for adding the required information to the EU digital battery passport falls on the party placing the battery on the market. This typically refers to the manufacturer or importer who first introduces the battery into the EU market.
    The passport contains details such as the composition and battery chemistry, the materials used, performance data and information on end-of-life recycling. However, the final requirements for the passport data have not yet been definitively defined.
    The EU digital battery passport will be accessible through a QR code. This code will be affixed to the battery itself and will contain a unique identifier that links to the digital record. The EU regulations specify that some of the data within the passport might be publicly accessible, while other information will be restricted to authorized users only. This ensures transparency for consumers while protecting sensitive details only relevant to specific stakeholders within the battery lifecycle.

    The EU digital battery passport boasts a range of benefits across the battery value chain, impacting manufacturers, consumers, and the environment.

    • Enhanced Transparency: Battery passports provide a comprehensive record of a battery’s characteristics, including its materials, performance data, and carbon footprint.
    • Sustainable Production: By tracking a battery’s lifecycle through the passport, manufacturers are incentivized to adopt eco-friendly practices. This could involve using recycled materials, optimizing battery design for longevity, and incorporating responsible sourcing practices.
    • Improved Battery Performance and Maintenance: The passport can include data on a battery’s expected lifespan and optimal usage conditions.
    • Efficient Recycling and Repurposing: The passport can facilitate the recycling process by providing valuable data on a battery’s composition and disassembly instructions. This ensures efficient material recovery and promotes a more circular battery economy.
    • Fairer Competition: With increased transparency in battery production and sourcing, manufacturers who prioritize sustainability can gain a competitive edge.

     

    Overall, the EU digital battery passport is a significant step towards a more sustainable and transparent battery ecosystem in the European Union.

    Further Questions

    We are aware that there are many more questions regarding the introduction and implementation of the EU regulations on the Digital Battery Passport.

    We are constantly trying to expand the FAQ on our website.

    If you have any further questions, please feel free to contact us at any time!

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