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lithium-ion batteries

Swiss investor banks on storage for California

Tue, 04/02/2019 - 14:39 -- Hugh Finzel
SUSI Partners logo

Swiss investment manager Susi Partners has acquired a 50% share of Macquaries Green Investment Group’s portfolio of behind-the-meter lithium-ion battery storage projects in California.

The more than 90 individual battery storage facilities in the western Los Angeles basin have a combined capacity of 63MW/340MWh.

“This is Susi’s first investment in the US,” said chief information officer Marco van Daele. “The state of California is pursuing the explicit goal of completely CO2-free power generation by 2045.”

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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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Finnish partners promote EV battery materials recycling

Wed, 03/27/2019 - 10:54 -- Hugh Finzel
Finnish partners promote EV battery materials recycling

Finnish companies Fortum and Crisolteq have teamed up to launch a materials recovery process claimed to make more than 80% of electric vehicle (EV) batteries recyclable.

Power company Fortum said the technology uses “a low-CO2 hydrometallurgical process”, developed by metal recycling services firm Crisolteq, to recover scarce battery metals such as cobalt, nickel, manganese and lithium.

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SK Innovation starts work on US battery factory

Tue, 03/26/2019 - 12:58 -- John Shepherd
Artist's impression of SK Innovation's EV plant

SK Innovation has broken ground on a US$1.1 billion electric vehicle batteries production plant in the US state of Georgia.

The South Korean group said the plant would have an annual production capacity of around 60 gigawatt-hours of lithium-ion batteries annually by 2022— when full production is slated to start.

SK Group vice-chairman Choi Jae-Won said the facility— being built on a 278-acre site in Commerce City— would be completed in the second half of 2021 and help to strengthen Korean-US economic cooperation.

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Asahi Kasei to expand LIB separator manufacturing

Thu, 03/21/2019 - 14:22 -- Hugh Finzel
Asahi Kasei Hipore Li-ion battery separators

Japanese tech group Asahi Kasei will invest 30 billion yen (US$271 million) to expand its manufacturing capacity for lithium-ion battery separators, in response to “booming global demand in the battery market”.

Asahi Kasei will use the funds to increase production capacity by an additional 450 million square metres a year, taking the total capacity to 1.55 billion sq m, well beyond its target— stated in January 2018— of 1.1bn sq m by 2020.

The current 450m sq m expansion is scheduled for completion in mid 2021 across two factory sites— Moriyama in Japan and North Carolina in the US.

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Australia’s Greens pledge battery storage fund for ‘greener’ future

Mon, 03/18/2019 - 15:33 -- Hugh Finzel

Australia’s Green Party has unveiled proposals for a AUD2.2 billion (US$1.56bn) fund to provide incentives for residents to install home battery storage in the country.

According to the Greens’ manifesto for upcoming federal elections, the fund would, from July 2019, provide up to AUD7,000 per battery system, providing “the opportunity to save consumers money while adding additional flexibility and security to the grid when required”.

The size of the grant would be tapered down as the cost of installing battery energy storage is similarly reduced, the party’s election pledge said.

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Powin secures lithium cells supply deal with CATL

Thu, 03/14/2019 - 12:09 -- Hugh Finzel

US-based battery storage firm Powin has secured a 1.85GWh supply pipeline of lithium-iron-phosphate (LFP) cells from Chinese battery maker Contemporary Amperex Technology Limited (CATL).

CATL will supply the cells into 2022 for Powin’s Stack modular battery energy storage systems, which are utilised in various utility scale, commercial, and industrial battery energy storage systems— “including the largest batteries in both Canada and Mexico”.

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Metair boosts profit on back of strong battery operations

Thu, 03/14/2019 - 12:08 -- John Shepherd
Metair MD Theo Loock

South Africa-based automotive and energy storage group Metair Investments has posted increased operating profit for 2018— boosted by its lead-acid operations in Turkey and Romania.

Metair said group operating profit for the year ended 31 December 2018 increased by 19% to just over ZAR1 billion (US$69 million) compared to the previous year. Revenue for 2018 was ZAR10.28bn, an increase of 8% compared to 2017.

Group earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) increased 9.4% to ZAR1.33bn.

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Leclanché to contribute ‘breakthough’ tech to German battery consortium

Fri, 03/08/2019 - 00:00 -- John Shepherd
Leclanché to contribute ‘breakthough’ tech to German battery consortium

Leclanché is working on a “breakthrough technology” that could be rolled out as part of its contribution to a government-backed battery cell consortium in Gemany, BEST Battery Briefing (BBB) can reveal.

Leclanché CEO Anil Srivastava (pictured) told BBB research and development work was already under way, but he said details could not yet be revealed, other than to say the technology was “within lithium”.

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Investment deal signed for batteries and EVs plant in Andhra Pradesh

Thu, 03/07/2019 - 11:52 -- John Shepherd
J. Krishna Kishore (left) signs the MOU with Urja Global’s director and chief financial officer Avinash Kumar Agarwal.

Indian Renewables developer Urja Global is investing the equivalent of US$28 million to build a combined electric vehicle and lithium-ion battery manufacturing plant in the state of Andhra Pradesh.

Urja’s has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the Andhra Pradesh Economic Development Board (APEDB) to build the facility in one of three shortlisted cities— Anantapur, Nellore, and Chittoor.

The APEDB said the plant will produce “high technology lithium-ion Batteries and EVs for the electric mobility ecosystem”.

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