Group 14 Technologies, a global manufacturer and provider of advanced silicon battery technology, announced it has broken ground on a second commercial-scale U.S. battery active materials factory in Moses Lake, Washington.
Materials produced at the site are expected to supply 200,000 electric vehicles per year at initial production, with potential to expand. The 20 GW plant reportedly marks the world’s largest factory for the production of advanced silicon battery materials, spanning one million square feet.
The facility was made possible in part through a $614 million Series C investment round led by Porsche and Microsoft. The Biden-Harris Administration and U.S. Department of Energy also provided a $100 million grant.
Group14 said its advanced silicon material offers higher energy density and charge rates than traditional lithium-ion batteries. Its blended silicon anode, called SCC55, can boost energy density by 30% over 1000 cycles with a 20% graphite blend.
SC55 offers 50% greater energy density than conventional graphite-based lithium-ion batteries, said the company. After 1000 cycles, the technology can achieve 1000 Wh per L density.
“For the consumer, the moment for cost-parity with internal combustion engines has arrived,” said Group14.
Today, over 90% of graphite is mined or processed in China. The silicon-based anode offers an alternative, potentially sparing Group14 and its customers from supply chain issues.
The company is now “full steam ahead” constructing the facility, which will be capable of producing 2,000 tons per year for SCC55. The production lines for the factory’s two initial modules are expected to come online in 2024. Over 400 jobs will be created for the construction of the site. The company is working with more than 20 community-based organizations focused on clean energy job creation, hiring, and job training to foster opportunity across the community.
Group14 has committed to purchase over $30 million of U.S. steel to build the first two modules, and is working with American suppliers for necessary components from asphalt to HVAC systems, supporting a domestic supply chain.
“Boosting the nation’s global competitiveness in battery manufacturing comes down to strengthening domestic supply chains, which is why we are ramping up our second U.S. factory at the speed in which we need to see innovation scale,” said Rick Luebbe, CEO and co-founder of Group14 Technologies. “By accelerating the timeline for market-ready, transformational battery technology, we are putting the power to electrify everything into the hands of U.S. workers who will become the backbone of the clean energy economy.”
To date, Group14 has raised $650 million in financing from notable investors and customers including Porsche AG, Microsoft Climate Innovation Fund, OMERS Capital Markets, Decarbonization Partners, Amperex Technology Limited (ATL), BASF, Showa Denko and SK Inc.
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