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Saft expands China Ni-Cd plant for rail projects

Wed, 05/22/2019 - 11:01 -- John Shepherd
Saft expands China Ni-Cd plant for rail projects

Saft has expanded its Zuhai battery cells plant in China to ramp up production for rail projects in Asia.

The French battery maker said on 20 May its new assembly line for MRX and MSX nickel-cadmium battery cells— which increases the plant's production capacity by up to 19 megampere-hours per year— is Saft’s “most important development in Asia” since it moved Zuhai to its existing 12,000m² site.

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SK Innovation to expand battery production in China

Wed, 05/15/2019 - 18:02 -- John Shepherd
SK Innovation to expand battery production in China

South Korea’s SK Innovation (SKI) is to build a second battery manufacturing plant in China in response to increasing global demand from the electric vehicle sector.

CEO Kim Jun (pictured) said the company intends to invest 579.9 billion Korean won (US$488 million) in the lithium-ion batteries project, which will be a joint venture with the Beijing Automobile Works Company— a subsidiary of the state-owned BAIC Group. 

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Upside Group starts up latest lead-carbon BESS in Germany

Fri, 05/10/2019 - 10:38 -- John Shepherd
Upside Group starts up latest lead-carbon BESS in Germany

A second large-scale lead-carbon battery storage system has been put into operation in Germany by the country’s Upside Group.

The 16 MW/25 MWh installation at Bennewitz, in the state of Saxony, uses batteries supplied by China’s Narada— as does Upside’s first such lead project at Langenreichenbach, near Leipzig.

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Lithium Australia in batteries tie-up with China’s DLG

Thu, 05/09/2019 - 00:00 -- John Shepherd

Lithium Australia (LA) and China’s DLG Battery Co are to form a joint venture to sell DLG’s lithium-ion batteries in Australia— and launch a battery product targeting domestic and global markets.

The 50-50 'Lithium Australia DLG' business will also “fast-track” the commercialisation of cathode powders produced by LA subsidiary VSPC for use in DLG batteries, according to a letter of intent signed by the firms.

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China’s Envision pledges EV battery costs of $50/kWh by 2025

Thu, 04/25/2019 - 12:40 -- John Shepherd
China’s Envision pledges EV battery costs of $50/kWh by 2025

The new Chinese owner of Nissan’s former international lithium-ion business has pledged to slash the cost of manufacturing electric vehicle battery cells to around US$50 per kWh by 2025.

Envision Group CEO Zhang Lei, whose Shanghai-based group recently finalised its acquisition of the Automotive Energy Supply Corporation (AESC), said: “The EV sector is facing three major challenges: safety, cost and grid integration. Digitalisation is the key to all of these.”

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Tianneng go-ahead for batteries spin-off

Wed, 04/24/2019 - 16:51 -- John Shepherd
Tianneng go-ahead for batteries spin-off

Financial regulators in China have given Tianneng Energy Technology the green light to spin-off its batteries division to “expand and transform” its lead-acid and lithium-ion manufacturing operations.

Tianneng said the spin-off would focus on R&D, manufacture, sales and “ancillary services” for lead-acid, lithium-ion and other “new energy batteries”.

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SK Innovation ‘in battery venture talks with VW, China’

Fri, 04/12/2019 - 12:54 -- Hugh Finzel

South Korea’s SK Innovation (SKI) is reportedly in talks to establish two separate battery production joint ventures— one with Volkswagen and another with Chinese partners.

SKI confirmed talks with Volkswagen in an interview with Reuters, saying the two companies were discussing building a factory together. SKI also said I was “on the cusp” of agreeing plans to build a plant in China with “undisclosed partners”.

The president of SKI’s batteries business YS Yoon told Reuters: “Our strategy is to keep up with technological advancement by having relationships with some of our key customers. Compared with rivals, we’ve been matching or exceeding investment in the (EV batteries) area since last year.”

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Saft to ‘expand lithium’ with Chinese lead group Tianneng

Fri, 04/05/2019 - 09:51 -- Hugh Finzel
Patrick Pouyanné

France’s Saft and Chinese lead-acid battery group Tianneng Energy Technology have formed a joint venture (JV) to expand lithium-ion manufacturing and “scale up its e-mobility and energy storage businesses”.

The JV will “primarily focus on the development, manufacturing and sales of advanced lithium-ion cells, modules and packs”. Production will be based at Tianneng’s Changxing factory, with a potential annual manufacturing capacity of 5.5GWh.

“This is a first strategic move driven by Total, following its acquisition of Saft in 2016,” said Patrick Poyanné, CEO of Total, the French battery manufacturer’s parent company. “The JV will allow Saft to join forces with a Chinese partner, a world leading lead-acid battery manufacturer, willing to develop its lithium-ion activities.

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UK and China launch virtual energy research centre

Thu, 03/28/2019 - 15:31 -- John Shepherd
Professor Nigel Brandon, Dean of Engineering at ICL (left) & Qikun Xue, VP for Research at Tsinghua

Imperial College London (ICL) and Tsinghua University are launching a virtual centre to collaborate on pioneering research into advanced energy systems.

The universities have agreed to jointly study “next-generation technologies and intelligent control strategies” towards low-carbon power and energy systems.

The centre will be the latest collaboration between the two universities, which have previously worked together on research projects including ‘the role of energy storage in enhancing operation and stability performance of sustainable power systems’.

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Leoch sets sights on Europe as new Asian battery plants start up

Wed, 03/27/2019 - 09:53 -- John Shepherd

Leoch International Technology is to bring two new lead-acid battery plants on stream this year in Vietnam— and has revealed plans to expand in Europe including through acquisitions.

The Hong Kong-listed firm said one of its Vietnam plants will start delivering reserve power batteries by mid-2019, while the other will be delivering SLI batteries by the end of the third quarter.

Construction of both plants is “in full gear”, Leoch said in a Hong Kong Stock Exchange announcement. “The design production capacity of these two factories will be more than double the current total overseas production capacity with opportunity for future expansion.”

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