Megan O’Connor

Megan O’Connor, CEO and co-founder of Nth Cycle, has developed an electrochemical recycling device to recover rare earth and specialty elements (i.e., cobalt) from end-of-life electronics waste streams for reuse in advanced manufacturing. Compared to traditional recycling processes that require energy-intensive solvent extraction and purification, Nth Cycle’s patent-pending technology relies on the electrochemical deposition of metal oxides, resulting in a process that can separate and reclaim multiple metals from the waste stream in just one device. This technology could offer several advantages including enhanced recovery of high-value specialty minerals using low-cost filters, reduced need for mining Earth-rare minerals in politically unstable or environmentally undesirable locations, enhanced atom economy during device fabrication, and reduced emissions of toxic elements or nascent industrial minerals that have yet unknown toxicities or environmental impacts.