News and Notes from the Battery Industry: November 2023

By Battery Power Online Staff 

November 17, 2023 | News from around the battery industry including new battery products, new manufacturing and production facilities, grants for anode materials, research collaborations, and more.

Eaton has launched its G4 rack power distribution unit (PDU). By accommodating power demands for a broad range of equipment and facility types, the G4 allows data center operators to deploy a single PDU across multiple locations, saving time, reducing costs and simplifying power management. Eaton’s G4 rack PDU is ideal for organizations with large-scale distributed IT infrastructures seeking to streamline PDU procurement and deployment and achieve higher equipment utilization. Available in 30 unique models, including both corded and universal input models, key benefits of the G4 rack PDU include: 3kVA single-phase power through 23kVA 3-phase power and voltage types compatible globally; ime24 to 48 outlets across corded and universal input (UPDU) models; universal input models have a PDU chassis that can be paired with any one of 17 removable input cables with 15 different plug types to streamline PDU procurement and deployment, enabling users to standardize global projects on a single PDU; versatile C39 outlets accept both C20 and C14 input plugs; hot-swappable gigabit network module (GNM) supports performance management software for real-time reports, trend charts, dashboards and alerts as well as remote troubleshooting and automated responses during power events; and more. G4 rack PDU metered and managed models are compatible with Eaton’s Brightlayer Data Centers suite software. When used together, these hardware/software solutions allow users to remotely manage and monitor large-scale, multi-site deployments of PDUs, as well as automate actions such as graceful shutdown during power events to protect data and ensure business continuity. Press release.

Aqua Metals announced financial results and provided a business update for the third quarter ended September 30, 2023. Third quarter highlights include bolstered financial strength with successful balance sheet transactions, including an equity raise, and strategic investment and partnership with Yulho Co., Ltd., which provided $25 million in gross proceeds; supplied Dragonfly Energy with battery-grade, sustainably recycled lithium hydroxide, which was used to manufacture a successfully cycle-tested lithium-based battery cell; advanced the ongoing strategic partnership with 6K Energy and signed a multi-part memorandum of understanding (MOU) regarding the companies’ plans for co-located facilities to build the first circular supply chain of critical minerals for lithium battery production in the U.S.; and completed a lifecycle analysis of the Li AquaRefining process with independent engineering firm ICF International demonstrating the superior environmental performance, cost savings, and waste reductions compared to standard hydrometallurgical battery recycling. Press release. 

Lithos Energy has opened a state-of-the-art manufacturing and pilot line facility for its latest generation of battery systems. The 65,000 square foot engineering facility is located in Hayward, California—Silicon Valley. This new facility will feature enhanced pack assembly automation and will manufacture, at scale, Lithos’ high-performance and high-durability battery pack systems. The facility will also serve as the model for planned co-located commercial scale factories that are to be in proximity to customer manufacturing facilities, both domestically and internationally. Press release.

Ionic Mineral Technologies (Ionic MT), a pioneering U.S.-based producer of advanced nano-silicon battery anode technology, has opened its new production facility, technical center and flagship headquarters located in Provo, Utah. This facility represents Utah’s premier enterprise-scale production facility dedicated to the development of nano-silicon battery anodes for electric vehicles (EVs) and lithium-ion battery solutions. The unveiling of this cutting edge facility empowers Ionic MT to rapidly expand the production of Ionisil nano-silicon—an innovation poised to meet the surging demand for fast-charging, extended-range electric vehicles. The inaugural phase of expansion is currently underway, with an initial production capacity of 2,000 tons per annum (TPA) scheduled for the second half of 2024. In Phase 2, the company will scale up to an additional 3,000 TPA for a total of 5,000 TPA within the same building. In Phase 3, Ionic MT is collaborating with a prominent global industrial partner to engineer a turn-key, greenfield production facility with an additional capacity of 20,000 TPA. Press release.

NOVONIX’s Anode Materials division finalized its $100 million grant award from the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) to expand domestic production of high-performance, synthetic graphite anode materials at its Riverside facility in Chattanooga, Tennessee. On 20 October 2022, NOVONIX announced its selection to enter negotiations for $150 million in grant funding to support the construction of a new synthetic graphite manufacturing facility with a targeted initial output of 30,000 tonnes per annum (tpa). Through negotiations with the DOE, the Company successfully reallocated the funding more immediately to its Riverside facility which has a target production of up to 20,000 tpa and, accordingly, resized the award to $100 million. The DOE grant funding will support the installation and commissioning of equipment to produce the targeted 20,000 tpa of capacity from Riverside. Under the terms of the grant, government funds must be matched by the recipient. In addition to the US$100 million DOE grant funding, the Company expects its cash position, customer revenues, additional government programs, strategic partners and other capital sources to fund planned growth. Press release.

SmartNanotubes Technologies developed the world’s first electronic nose chip “Smell iX16” for mass market applications, and Linxens, the global leader in SmartCard Technology, RFID tags and reel-to-reel flexible electronics united their efforts to develop a disruptive early warning sensor for Li-ion batteries in electric vehicles. Thus far, there is no reliable solution to give an early warning of the battery runaway phenomenon. Linxens and SmartNanotubes will address this issue by detecting gases emitted early on in this process. The latter contributes through its unique smell detection technology, whereby Linxens brings in their expertise in miniaturization and mass-fabrication of flexible electronics. Press release.

American Battery Factory has broken ground in Tucson, Arizona, on a two million square foot gigafactory. The site will provide an estimated 1,000 jobs, $1.2 billion in capital investment and $3.1 billion in economic impact to Arizona. Located on 267 acres in Pima County’s Aerospace Research Campus—close to world-class companies such as Raytheon—ABF’s gigafactory will be the home of energy storage innovation, with opportunities for new technology development. Utilizing rapid modular construction by Sprung Instant Structures, the company plans to have the headquarters, R&D center and initial factory module built by 2025. Using cutting-edge construction technology, the building will greatly limit waste at the site, be airtight and will ensure the protection of the battery cells during production. Press release.

Alsym Energy announces the first high-performance, non-flammable battery storage technology suitable for warmer climates. Climates with abundant sun or wind are ideally suited to renewable energy production. This presents a generational opportunity to bring new, diverse industries to the Middle East; however, expensive, fire-prone battery technologies are serious impediments to ambitious plans for rapid growth. With system-level capacities like lithium-ion and the ability to operate at elevated temperatures common to the region, Alsym batteries are safe to use in any environment. Alsym batteries also cost less than lithium-ion and require less cooling equipment, significantly increasing system efficiency and lowering both acquisition and operating costs. Press release.