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Gigafactories

Race quickens to develop UK’s lithium-ion manufacturing capacity

Wed, 11/03/2021 - 10:18 -- Paul Crompton

Plans to develop lithium-ion gigafactories in the UK are progressing this week with news from two companies aiming to deliver a combined 95GWh of capacity in the next decade.

Technology firm Envision AESC— a joint venture formed in 2007 between Nissan Motor Company, NEC Corporation and NEC Tokin Corporation— has gained formal planning permission for its manufacturing plant at the International Advanced Manufacturing Park (IAMP) in Sunderland, UK.

The initial 9GWh-capacity plant will form part of a £1billion ($1.4 billion) partnership with Nissan UK and Sunderland City Council to create an electric vehicle hub to support EV production.

Planning decision secures Envision’s investment of £450 million ($619 million), and paves the way for potential future investment of £1.8 billion ($2.4 billion) on the site to generate 35GWh capacity by 2030.

Construction of the new building is due to begin in 2022 to support battery production in 2024.

The company’s existing Sunderland plant has been supplying batteries to Nissan for the Korean firm’s LEAF electric vehicle for the last nine years.

The gigafactory will be 100% powered by renewable energy and supported by an £80 million ($110 million) microgrid being developed by Sunderland City Council.

The plant will also deploy integrated AIoT smart technology to monitor and optimise energy consumption, predict demand and maintenance requirements and utilise battery storage facilities to manage energy supply intermittency. 

Permission came after a public consultation exercise with local stakeholders and residents, which received 80 per cent positive support.

Envision AESC is partnering with Renault Group to develop a 9GWh gigafactory in Douai by 2024, with the aim of reaching 24GWh six-years later. 

West Midland gigafactory

Further plans for the West Midlands Gigafactory have been announced, including costs, capacity and schedules.

The plant in Coventry, is a public private joint venture (JV) between Coventry City Council and Coventry Airport and supported by an alliance of local governments, industrial groups, and universities.

The JV aims to begin production by 2025, before moving to its full planned capacity of 60MWh at an unreleased date.

The gigafactory will require a £2.5 billion ($3.4 billion) cash injection.

The plant will be based next to the UK Battery Industrialisation Centre.

UK’s required battery capacity

According to the Faraday Institution, the UK will need eight gigafactories to meet domestic demand from EV and energy storage system developers.

Joining the race for the UK’s first gigafactory is Britishvolt, which announced last December it was set to build its plant in the North East of England— five months after signing a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the Welsh government.

The company began preliminary work on its plant in September after acquiring exclusive rights to a site in Blyth, Northumberland.

Read more about the Britishvolt’s plans in the Autumn 2020 edition of BEST magazine HERE

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Europe to grasp quarter of lithium-ion production market as global capacity quadruples to 1.3 TWh

Wed, 08/12/2020 - 15:18 -- Paul Crompton

Global lithium-ion cell manufacturing capacity could rise fourfold compared to last year's figures to reach 1.3TWh in 2030 thanks in part to the rise of gigafactories being built in Europe, according to industry analysts Wood Mackenzie.

The company’s report shows that 119 battery manufacturing facilities that are operational, under construction or announced by more than 50 vendors will increase global battery making capacity. 

Asia will continue to dominate the industry, with the area’s manufacturers— CATL, LG Chem, BYD, and SK Innovation— leading in the capacity arms race. 

Wood Mackenzie senior analyst Mitalee Gupta said: “Manufacturing capacity in Asia Pacific accounts for 80% of global capacity pipeline. The region will remain the leader of lithium-ion battery production for the next decade.  

“Within Asia Pacific, China dominates the pipeline capacity and is expected to double its capacity from 345GWh this year to more than 800GWh by 2030. 

“In addition to local vendors’ rapid expansion in China, foreign manufacturers such as LG Chem, Samsung SDI and SK Innovation have also been adding new lines after they became eligible for subsidies from the Chinese government in 2019.” 

However, emerging European vendors such as Northvolt in Norway, ACC— the joint venture between Saft and PSA Group (8GWh production plant rising to 24GWh) and Britishvolt could push Europe’s market share from 7% of global capacity, to around a quarter in 2030 amid growing demand for batteries for electric vehicles and energy storage. 

Growth will also be driven by Asian manufacturers investing heavily in new plants in Europe, including: CATL’s Erfurt Plant (Germany), LG Chem’s Wroclaw Plant (Poland), and Samsung SDI’s Goed Plant (Hungary). 

The Americas will maintain its share for the next decade, suggest WoodMac, with pipeline capacity concentrated in the US, and led by Tesla’s Gigafactory in Nevada. 

In terms of battery chemistry, NMC is the mainstream chemistry in operating facilities, followed by LFP. However, announced capacity is often unspecified due to constantly advancing battery technologies and changing market preference. 

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Lead-acid firm Amara Raja eyes India’s ‘billion dollar’ Li-ion market

Thu, 07/25/2019 - 09:54 -- Paul Crompton
Lead-acid firm Amara Raja eyes India’s ‘billion dollar’ Li-ion market

India’s Amara Raja has said supplying lithium-ion batteries for electric vehicles represents a multi-billion-dollar “sunrise space” to expand business in the country, while keeping its focus on lead-acid.

The company said India’s government-backed push for 40% of all private vehicle sales to be EVs by 2030 “is a US$42 billion opportunity” for lithium battery sales within that period.

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Jaguar Land Rover urges UK giga-investment plan

Fri, 07/05/2019 - 13:05 -- John Shepherd
Jaguar Land Rover urges UK giga-investment plan

Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) has called for “giga-scale battery production” to be launched in the UK, as the company revealed plans to manufacture a range of new electric vehicles in England.

JLR said the plans for its Castle Bromwich plant near Birmingham marked “the next significant step in delivering on the company’s commitment to offer customers electrified options for all new Jaguar and Land Rover models from 2020”.

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Magnis signs separators deal with Celgard

Mon, 02/19/2018 - 11:44 -- John Shepherd
Magnis signs separators deal with Celgard

Australian graphite producer Magnis Resources has inked a deal with lithium-ion separator firm Celgard for the supply of advanced separators to battery plants being built by Magnis and its development partners.

Magnis said the agreement covers battery plant projects in which it has a stake including those in New York, Australia and Germany.

 

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German battery chiefs warn EU over Giga cash dash for lithium

Mon, 02/19/2018 - 11:21 -- John Shepherd
German battery chiefs warn EU over Giga cash dash for lithium

Battery industry leaders in Germany say there is currently “no business case” for “politically-inspired” plans by the European Union to build at least 10 Gigafactories across the bloc for lithium-based batteries.

EU energy chief Maroš Šefčovič said last week the Gigafactories would be needed to produce “green European batteries” for new electric vehicles produced in Europe— and to combat Asia’s increasing dominance in the EV batteries sector.

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VW unveils $60bn batteries investment plan

Tue, 09/19/2017 - 11:01 -- News Editor
VW unveils $60bn batteries investment plan

Volkswagen has announced plans to invest more than EUR50 billion ($60bn) in battery cells and related technology, towards the electrification of its entire model portfolio by 2030 “at the latest”.

CEO Matthias Mueller (pictured) said the group has already launched a global tender process to find manufacturing partners in China, Europe and North America— as VW will “need more than 150GWh of lithium-ion battery capacity annually by 2025 for its own e-fleet alone”.

 

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Magnis wins fresh gigafactory deals

Tue, 09/05/2017 - 10:47 -- News Editor
Magnis wins fresh gigafactory deals

Australian graphite producer Magnis Resources is to supply raw materials to the German start-up behind plans to build two gigafactories in Europe.

Magnis said it has signed a deal with TerraE Holding GmbH, which recently formed a consortium of 17 (now 18) major companies and research institutions – and plans a total of 34GWh of production capacity across two lithium-ion battery cell production plants in Germany.

 

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