Chemical firm BASF has broken ground on its cathode active materials production plant in Schwarzheide, Germany, less than a year after announcing the project.
The plant is scheduled to start making enough materials for 400,000 full electric vehicles per year in 2022 as part of BASF’s investment plan in the European battery materials market.
BASF aims to provide a reliable and sustainable supply of high-energy density cathode active materials to cell producers and automotive customers in Europe.
Peter Altmaier, Germany’s federal minister for Economic Affairs and Energy, said: “BASF’s groundbreaking ceremony marks a further step in the right direction for Germany’s industrial sector and the establishment of a European value chain for electric mobility. We aim to produce the world’s best-quality and best-performing batteries in Germany and Europe. We are therefore backing the expansion of battery manufacturing which uses the latest and most environmentally friendly materials.”
The Federal Government and the Land is providing around €175 million ($207.6 million) towards BASF’s project.
BASF is also building a precursor cathode active material plant in Harjavalta, Finland.
The new plants will use efficient manufacturing processes, a high share of renewable energy, upstream integration into the key raw materials like cobalt and nickel, and a short transportation route along the value chain.