FUEL CELLS & Electrolysers

The future belongs to hydrogen technology. Reason enough to face up to the associated challenges now. That is why we are already working on the materials of tomorrow.

Fuel cells have become increasingly important as energy converters in stationary and mobile applications in recent years. However, other technologies such as electrolysers will also play an important role in the production of hydrogen in the near future.

The components they contain are coated with precious metals such as platinum, iridium or ruthenium. In addition to PGMs, however, they also contain other critical raw materials that must be recovered in the interests of a sustainable closed resource cycle.

Areas of application for fuel cells and electrolysers

Diverse materials, precise analysis

Thanks to our many years of experience in PGM recycling, we can recover precious metals from the entire life cycle of fuel cells and electrolysers.

  • Complete fuel cell stacks & electrolysers
  • Individual components such as MEA, CCM or BPP
  •  Production scrap and waste such as catalyser ink, wipes, absorption material, paste residues, electrode material with platinum ink

Our core expertise lies in the precise sampling and analysis of individual components and materials. The aim is to prepare the individual components in such a way that a homogeneous sample is created that can be further prepared and analysed. Using established analytical methods; we obtain an exact profile of the material and can thus determine the exact PGM content.

Customised services

  • Dismantling of complete fuel cell stacks, electrolysers, PAFC fuel cell systems
  • Separation of the individual components
  • Recycling of the individual fractions
  • Recovery of PGM and critical raw materials
  • Precious metal analyses
  • Attractive precious metal remuneration models
  • Transport organisation and implementation
  • We will work with you to develop your customised model. We will be happy to advise you!


Valuable resources, intelligently recycled

For more than 25 years, we have been your reliable partner for the recovery of valuable precious metals from a wide range of applications. We are now also using this expertise specifically for new technologies from the hydrogen industry.

We recycle your fuel cells, electrolysers or components from hydrogen technologies in a resource-saving and economical way.

Benefit from our many years of experience in recycling platinum group metals. With our global network, we offer you sustainable and ecological recycling solutions - for your added value!

We are a partner to industry and ensure that important resources are conserved. Our aim is to close material cycles. We take a holistic approach - from the dismantling of entire fuel cell stacks to the separation of individual components and the recovery of the respective raw materials for reuse in new products.

In the BEST4Hy project, we developed a sustainable process for recovering PGMs and ionomers from catalyst-coated membranes (CCMs), which were successfully reused in new membranes.

In addition to PGMs, however, hydrogen technologies also contain other critical raw materials such as cobalt, graphite, rare earths and titanium, which also need to be recovered in order to ensure a sustainable circular economy in the long term.

As part of the BEST4Hy project, our team initially demonstrated on a pilot plant scale that both the PGMs and the ionomer can be recovered and used in new membranes. These recovered raw materials have a significantly lower CO2 footprint than precious metals, for example, which are extracted in mines during primary production.

From 2021 to the end of 2023, Hensel Recycling was a member of an international partnership to develop technologies for the recovery of critical raw materials from hydrogen technologies - BEST4Hy. As part of the EU-funded project, we developed a sustainable recycling method that recovers both the PGMs and the valuable ionomer from catalyst-coated membranes (CCMs).



Raw Material Recovery From Fuel Cells

Raw Material Recovery from Fuel Cells
333 KB , PDF