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Recycling technologies for critical raw materials from EoL products (IA)

Actions should develop material efficient high-quality recycling and preparation for re-use of one or more of the following end-of-life product categories/key waste streams: waste electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE), end-of-life vehicles[[With the exception of permanent magnets in motors which are included in action 11: ERMA action plan on rare earths magnets: Recyclability and resource efficiency of Rare Earth based magnets]], waste windmills[[With the exception of permanent magnets in motors which are included in action 11: ERMA action plan on rare earths magnets: Recyclability and resource efficiency of Rare Earth based magnets]] and solar PV and machine tools (e.g. hard metal scrap). Rare earths permanent magnets are excluded from this topic since they are subject to a dedicated call HORIZON-CL4-2023/2024-RESILIENCE-01-08: Recyclability and resource efficiency of Rare Earth based magnets.

Their processing, reuse, recycling and recovery schemes are complex and imply different steps, ranging from collection, logistics, sorting and separation to cleaning, refining and purification of materials.

Actions should focus on the whole chain of recycling processes and procedures - from collection, logistics, characterisation, sorting, cleaning, refining and purification of secondary raw materials and quality of produced outputs.

Recycling and re-use where the recycled material is of lower quality and functionality than the original material (downcycling), is not in the scope of the topic.

Actions should acquire new data on secondary raw materials via in situ sampling from different regions across the EU, collect existing data and present in a harmonised UNFC format (United Nations Framework Classification for Resources) and develop sampling protocols, methodologies, and technologies to quantify and characterise the CRM resources in specific products, urban mines and waste repositories.

Actions should envisage clustering activities with other projects aiming at second life, re-use, repurposing, remanufacturing of products and/or components relevant selected projects for cross-projects co-operation, consultations and joint activities on cross-cutting issues and share of results as well as participating in joint meetings and communication events. To this end proposals should foresee a dedicated work package and/or task, and earmark the appropriate resources accordingly.

Actions should facilitate the market uptake of solutions developed through industrially- and user-driven multidisciplinary consortia covering the relevant value chain and should consider standardisation aspects when relevant. The action should also include the analysis of financial opportunities ensuring the market exploitation and replication of the circular business model behind the developed solutions as new processes, products and/or services.

Actions should clearly demonstrate how they contribute to a decreased level of resource and energy consumption, leading to a lower CO2 footprint.

Proposals submitted under this topic should include a business case and exploitation strategy, as outlined in the introduction to this Destination. For TRLs 6-7, a credible strategy to achieve future full-scale deployment in the EU is expected, indicating the commitments of the industrial partners after the end of the project.

In this topic the integration of the gender dimension (sex and/or gender analysis) in research and innovation content is not a mandatory requirement, however, should you consider it to be of relevance for your specific proposal, you are strongly encouraged to do it.