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Amte Power and Britishvolt sign MoU for UK’s landmark lithium-ion battery gigafactories

Thu, 05/21/2020 - 14:50 -- Paul Crompton

UK battery maker Amte Power and Britishvolt announced plans on 20 May to build the UK’s first lithium-ion battery cell gigafactories servicing the automotive and energy storage markets.

The British start-ups have signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) focussed on enabling the scalable production of lithium-ion batteries to support the UK’s Road to Zero (at least half 50% of new car sales to be ultra-low emission by 2030) targets and transition to electrification.

Initially there will be two different gigafactories for two different products lines, with these potentially being at the same site with the potential to merge if the agreements laid out in the MoU are met, said a spokesman for the companies. 

Britishvolt aims to build a 30GWh factory in either Dundee, Scotland, or Teesside, UK. The firm aims to reach full capacity of its batteries for automotive, grid storage and large industrial equipment applications by 2025/26.

Lars Calrstrom, CEO at Britishvolt said: “Our selections are based on a number of factors including import/export accessibility and proximity to green energy source.”

Britishvolt aim to initiate a phased plan, with £1.2 billion ($1.47 billion) of initial investment needed for the first 10GWh plant, and another £700 million ($857 million) earmarked for the second 10GWh stage of expansion, and an equal amount for the final stage.

Amte is working with the Advanced Propulsion Centre  (APC) to develop an energy cell in both pouch and cylindrical formats. 

Amte is set to build a battery production facility in one of five, earmarked locations. The firm has designed a 1GWh a year production facility, which is scheduled to be online in 2023 at a cost of £200 million ($245 million).

Ian Constance, CEO of APC, said: “The UK is a highly credible location for green growth investment. It has a rich and diverse supply chain, a rapidly decarbonising energy supply and an innovation culture, and government support through a strong industrial strategy.

“As the pace and scale of change accelerates towards new net zero targets the UK is in a prime position to design, develop, manufacture and export high-value battery technologies.” 

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