Platinum is of high importance for several emerging energy technologies which could help address our sustainability challenges such as climate change; but their increasing use could also lead to potential supply risk issues due to the over-concentration in mining and production. This paper used a dynamic material flow analysis (MFA) method to quantify current and future European platinum cycle by 2050 considering optimistic, pessimistic, and medium development of fuel cells, electrolysers, and other applications. We found when the primary platinum use shifted from autocatlysts to fuel cells, the European platinum demand will increase significantly and thus result in potential supply risks. Therefore, better end-of-life management systems to address the high losses of open-loop recycling (e.g., autocatalysts) and changing framework conditions (e.g., quantity and quality) of recyclability would be important. In addition, material efficiency and substitution will also become important in an increasingly constraint climate future.
Keywords Fuel cells, Platinum, Critical materials, Platinum recycling, Emerging energy technology