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Lithium-ion

LIB disposal under fire after landfill blaze and ‘exploding e-cigs’

Mon, 02/18/2019 - 00:00 -- John Shepherd

Fire chiefs in Scotland have issued a plea for responsible recycling after a lithium-ion battery was suspected of sparking a major blaze at a landfill site in Dunbar.

Fire fighters spent more than 40 hours battling the blaze in a Dunbar building where waste arriving on site is stored before it is landfilled.

More than 300 tonnes of refuse was set alight in last month’s fire— which at its height required 40 fire-fighters and six fire trucks.

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Testing begins at American Manganese recycling plant

Mon, 02/18/2019 - 00:00 -- Hugh Finzel

American Manganese (AM) has reported reaching a “great milestone” in its work towards “a complete lithium-ion battery recycling process” by beginning operation of its five stage pilot plant operation in Canada.

AM’s processing partner Kemetco Research has started processing a select sample of cathode scrap material at AM’s lithium-ion recycling pilot plant in British Columbia.

The cathode scrap material is being processed through stages 1 and 2 of the pilot plant, which will see the sample undergo pre-treatment and then leaching.

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GS Yuasa unveils lead-lithium energy storage platform

Mon, 02/18/2019 - 00:00 -- John Shepherd

Japan-based lead and lithium group GS Yuasa has unveiled a dual chemistry energy storage system that “combines the fast response of lithium-ion with the endurance of lead-acid”.

GS Yuasa said the container-based system is the “world’s first energy storage platform where lead acid and lithium-ion batteries are combined to feed a power conversion system”.

The battery giant partnered with Infinite Group, the University of Sheffield and Innovate UK to develop the ‘Adept’ (advanced multi-energy management and optimisation time shifting platform) system.

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Tesla to acquire Maxwell Technologies

Mon, 02/11/2019 - 00:00 -- John Shepherd
Dr Franz Fink

Tesla is to acquire Maxwell Technologies, in a deal that values the California-based ultracapacitor firm at around US$218 million.

Maxwell said on 4 February the companies had entered into a definite merger agreement under which Tesla would buy the company's 45.9 million shares for $4.75 a share in an all-stock transaction. The deal represented a 55% premium to the share price, which closed at $3.07 on 1 February.

The merger is expected to be finalised in the second quarter of 2019 or shortly after, subject to the successful tender and exchange of shares, regulatory approvals and customary closing conditions.

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Freudenberg doubles down on XALT Energy

Mon, 02/11/2019 - 00:00 -- Hugh Finzel

Freudenberg Sealing Technologies is making a “multi-million dollar investment” to take a majority stake in XALT Energy, a Michigan-based developer of lithium-ion energy storage systems.

The announcement comes less than a year after Freudenberg’s initial “multi-million dollar investment”, which gave the company a 31% stake in XALT. Freudenberg cited “increasing demands for lithium-ion battery technology that specifically targets commercial vehicles” as the motivation behind increasing its stake— which gives them a “more than 50% share” of the battery manufacturer.

XALT Energy will retain its name and will become an affiliate brand of the Freudenberg global group, headquartered in Germany. Jess Michalski will take over leadership of XALT from retiring CEO, Richard Cundiff.

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Alexander Technologies expands in UK to meet demand

Mon, 02/11/2019 - 00:00 -- Hugh Finzel

Alexander Technologies Europe has announced expansion plans in order to keep pace with rising demand for its lithium-ion products.

The expansion plans include an additional manufacturing facility in Peterlee, UK, and a “significant investment in its battery and charger manufacturing capabilities.”

CEO Michael Shirley described the expansion plans as “a major investment for the company” which “represent a significant increase to our current footprint, from 16,000 sq. ft. to 40,000 sq. ft.”

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Utility bankruptcy blow for California battery storage?

Mon, 02/04/2019 - 00:00 -- John Shepherd

Plans for four major energy storage projects in California could be under threat after the Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E) filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy.

The California Public Utilities Commission had granted approval for the lithium-ion projects— totalling 567.5 megawatts/2,270 megawatt-hours—to replace retiring gas generators.

The proposals included a 300MW/1,200MWh system— billed as “the largest system of its kind in the world— to be provided by Vistra Energy and located on the site of the Moss Landing Power Plant.

However, PG&E said on 29 January it was seeking court approval to access US$5.5 billion in debtor-in-possession financing to support operations and ongoing safety initiatives.

PG&E had not responded to questions from BEST Battery Briefing about the future of the battery projects at the time of going to press.

The utility cited lawsuits from victims of Californian wildfires and tens of billions of dollars in potential liabilities when it announced it planned to file for bankruptcy.

State investigators recently determined that the utility’s equipment was not to blame for a 2017 fire that caused deaths in northern California wine country.

The full story is only available in our FREE weekly industry newsletter, so sign-up to get it delivered to your inbox every Monday.

Utility bankruptcy blow for California battery storage?

Mon, 02/04/2019 - 00:00 -- John Shepherd

Plans for four major energy storage projects in California could be under threat after the Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E) filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy.

The California Public Utilities Commission had granted approval for the lithium-ion projects— totalling 567.5 megawatts/2,270 megawatt-hours—to replace retiring gas generators.

The proposals included a 300MW/1,200MWh system— billed as “the largest system of its kind in the world— to be provided by Vistra Energy and located on the site of the Moss Landing Power Plant.

The full story is only available in our FREE weekly industry newsletter, so sign-up to get it delivered to your inbox every Monday.

US-Chinese lithium cell supply agreement

Mon, 01/28/2019 - 00:00 -- Hugh Finzel
SimpliPhi logo

A three-year supply agreement for “no less than 19 million lithium batteries” has been signed between SimpliPhi Power and CBAK Energy Technology.

California-based SimpliPhi will buy the industry-standard 26650 lithium batteries for the period starting this year.

SimpliPhi said its storage system components “are UL certified and have been rigorously tested and deployed by the U.S. Army and Marine Corps".

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Malaysia ‘looks to achieve first Li-ion production in ASEAN’

Mon, 01/28/2019 - 00:00 -- Hugh Finzel
Datuk Madani Sahari

Within the next 18 months, Malaysia is set to become the first country in the Association of SouthEast Asian Nations (ASEAN) to produce lithium-ion batteries, according to the CEO of Malaysia Automotive Robots and IoT Institute (MARII).

Datuk Madani Sahari (pictured) told South Korea’s Maeil Business Newspaper that, at least in terms of size and energy retention, the batteries produced would be similar to those used in Tesla automobiles.

“We are looking at possible production sites in Negeri Sembilan or Sengalor, which will be finalised in the first half of this year”.

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