General Motors is leading a $60-million Series B financing round in Mitra Chem, a Silicon Valley-based, AI-enabled battery materials innovator. The company’s AI-powered platform and advanced research and development facility in Mountain View, California, will help accelerate GM’s commercialization of affordable electric vehicle batteries.
GM and Mitra Chem will develop advanced iron-based cathode active materials (CAMs), such as lithium manganese iron phosphate (LMFP), to power affordable and accessible EV batteries compatible with GM’s EV propulsion architecture, the Ultium Platform.
Iron-based cathodes are cheaper, cleaner, and safer than legacy battery technologies such as NMC and NCA that exist today, but are less energy-dense than Ni/Co-based ternary cathodes. Mitra seeks to maintain the cost advantage of iron-based materials while improving the energy density.
Source: Mitra Chem
GM’s funding will help Mitra Chem to scale its current operations and to expedite their novel battery materials formulation to market.
This is a strategic investment that will further help reinforce GM’s efforts in EV batteries, accelerate our work on affordable battery chemistries like LMFP and support our efforts to build a US-focused battery supply chain. GM is accelerating larger investments in critical subdomains of battery technology, like cell chemistry, components and advanced cell production processes. Mitra Chem’s labs, methods and talent will fit well with our own R&D team’s work.—Gil Golan, GM vice president, Technology Acceleration and Commercialization
Mitra Chem’s battery R&D facility can simulate, synthesize and test thousands of cathode designs monthly, ranging in size from grams to kilograms. These processes drive significantly shortened learning cycles, enabling shorter time to market for new battery cell formulas.
An “atoms-to-tons acceleration platform” powers Mitra Chem’s lab, using simulations and physics-informed machine learning models to accelerate formulation discovery, cathode synthesis optimization, cell-lifetime evaluation and process scale-up. The in-house cloud platform, purpose-built for battery cathode development, automates data ingestion across diverse synthesis, material characterization, cell prototyping, and standardized analyses and visualizations.
Mitra Chem is building the first North American lithium-ion battery materials product company that shortens the lab-to-production timeline by more than 90%.
Mitra Chem's first product category is iron-based cathodes for Western battery applications. Iron-based cathodes shift away from the use of elements such as nickel and cobalt, which are facing imminent supply crunches. Mitra Chem takes cathode products from lab to industrial scale faster than the competition by leveraging an in-house machine learning technology advantage to shorten the R&D timeline. The company’s goal is to transform the cathode from a specialty chemical to a platform technology that differentiates cell performance by end application.