Upcycling plastic waste into high-capacity sodium-battery anodes

Reference number 11601

Sectors: Chemicals, Engineering, Sustainability

Industries: Batteries, Chemicals, Materials

Plastic waste upcycling into high-performance battery anodes for the next-generation of fast-charging and low-cost sodium-ion batteries (NIBs).

Proposed use

This innovative technology revolutionises the battery industry by directly converting polyethylene terephthalate (PET) plastic waste, including discarded plastic bottles, into high-performance anodes for batteries. This breakthrough has immense potential benefits for battery manufacturers, energy storage companies, and recycling industries, driving the widespread adoption of Na-ion batteries in electric vehicles and renewable energy systems, and promoting a global shift towards a circular economy.

Problem addressed

Despite PET being the most recycled plastic globally, a large percentage of it still ends up in landfills or incineration facilities. Imperial’s technology tackles this issue by transforming PET waste into high-performance carbon anodes for batteries. These anodes not only exhibit high energy storage capacity but also support rapid charging capabilities, essential for the next generation of fast-charging, low-cost NIBs. This process significantly reduces raw material costs—using feedstock approximately 100 times cheaper than current precursors—offering a cost-efficient and sustainable solution.

Technology overview

The technology introduces a novel solution  that directly converts PET waste into high-quality battery anodes through a unique carbonisation process using tin as a precursor. The created carbon-tin composite anodes can hold a large amount of energy, which allows batteries to charge quickly and hold more power. This innovation is particularly beneficial for producing fast-charging, high-energy-density sodium-ion batteries, offering an effective and sustainable approach to battery manufacturing.


  • Low-cost PET waste feedstocks that significantly reduces the cost of anode production.
  • Anodes produced are compatible with both lithium-ion and sodium-ion batteries.
  • Anodes has fast-charging capabilities, which is suitable to use in sodium-ion batteries.
  • Anodes has high energy density. Facilitates the creation of batteries with greater energy storage capacity.
  • Provides an eco-friendly alternative to traditional battery production methods.

Intellectual property information

GB Priority Application (Number: 2400985.4)


Headshot of Professor Magda Titirici
Professor Magda Titirici

Chair in Sustainable Energy Materials
Faculty of Engineering, Department of Chemical Engineering

Visit personal site

Talk to us about this technology


Dr Valeska Gonzalez

Industry Partnerships and Commercialisation Executive, Engineering

Dr Valeska Gonzalez is Industry Partnerships and Commercialisation Executive for the Faculty of Engineering at Imperial College London

Contact Valeska

+44 (0)20 7594 6893

[email protected]

Related technologies

No Results Found

The page you requested could not be found. Try refining your search, or use the navigation above to locate the post.

Sign up for updates

Sign up for monthly technology alerts via email, and find other ways to connect with us.