While this program is still in the works, the idea is that smartphone batteries are underused and can be recycled and used to save solar energy. Here's an excerpt:
Despite their hefty price tag, smartphones have an average consumer lifetime of about three years. The lithium ion batteries that power them, however, can last for about five years—meaning that just about every discarded smartphone generates e-waste and squanders the battery's twilight years. To cut down on the environmental waste and provide storage for rural communities, researchers at Kyung Hee University in Seoul have proposed a model for recycling unspent lithium ion batteries into energy storage units for solar-powered LED lamps.
Boucar Diouf, a professor in the Department of Information Display at Kyung Hee University in Seoul, describes the logistics of his recycling and repurposing program this week in the Journal of Renewable and Sustainable Energy.
The proposed program consists of five general steps—battery collection, testing and selection, system manufacturing, commercialization, and installation. Each of these steps would provide opportunities for job creation, Diouf said.