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Dow Kokam Breaks Ground on Li-ion Battery Manufacturing Plant in Michigan

Dow Kokam’s Chief Executive Officer Ravi Shanker was joined by Vice President Joe Biden, Michigan Governor Jennifer Granholm, The Dow Chemical Company Chairman and CEO Andrew Liveris and others at a groundbreaking ceremony in Midland, Michigan for Dow Kokam’s new advanced, large-format battery production facility. The facility will produce lithium-ion batteries to supply the growing electric vehicle (EV) and hybrid electric vehicle (HEV) market.

Dow Kokam envisions an 800,000 square-foot, large-format battery manufacturing facility that will be developed in two overlapping construction phases. When complete, the facility will employ nearly 800 people, and have the capacity to manufacture 1.2 billion watt hours of large-format lithium-ion batteries—enough to power 60,000 fully electric or hybrid electric vehicles annually, (assuming a 20 kWh battery system). The first phase of construction, supported by a $161 Million Department of Energy (DOE) Recovery Act grant, has a targeted capacity of 600 million watt hours and will employ up to 320 people at steady state.

Dow Kokam has committed to spend $322 million for the first phase of construction. In August 2009, the DOE awarded Dow Kokam $161 million dollars in federal grants as part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) to build the production facility.

Dow Kokam was established in 2009 to develop and manufacture advanced energy storage technologies for the transportation and other industries. The company is owned by The Dow Chemical Company, TK Advanced Battery LLC and Groupe Industriel Marcel Dassault.

Comments

HarveyD

DOW-KOKAM could become one of the top 20 major battery manufacture. Good news for Michigan and USA's electrified vehicle manufacturers.

SJC

This IS good news, the area can use the plant and the industry can use the batteries. It is connecting production with consumption. The Green Party in Germany created feed in tariffs for 20 years to provide a stable situation for investment. Maybe this is what we need to get all this going, some assurances that people can count on over time.

SJC

Maybe that is the nature of the $7500 government rebate on the Volt. If you sell the cars, you can sell the batteries and an industry is born.

HarveyD

Ontario is offering up to $8500 CAN on the first 10,000 electrified cars. If the other Canadian provinces do that same it would subsidies the first 35,000 electrified cars at $8500 each. A new Federal government could do as much for a total of 70,000 e-cars. A fair first year start.

SJC

If you rebate $7500 on 100,000 cars per year, that is $750 million or 3/4 of a billion dollars each year. If you have a 10% oil import fee to pay for that and synthetic fuel plants, that might be fine.

If we import 4 billion barrels of oil each year in the U.S. at $75 per barrel, a 10% fee would bring in about $30 billion per year. That is more than enough to make a transition to FFV/HEV/PHEV and EV with money to spare. This was proposed in 1979, but then oil was cheap and Congress said "forget it".

sulleny

Agreed SJC. This is good news for electrification in general. The problem with your tax is it raises the cost of fuel just when the economy is hurting. So the reaction and likelihood of passage is poor. If the tax was legislated to rest solely at the wellhead - it might fly.

Better might be to charge big oils the cost of military operations that protect wellheads in hostile territories. Many oilcos benefit from the courage of young men and women stationed overseas. Were they to PAY for these services into an energy independence fund - it could help finance the transition to domestic energy resources.

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