Imperial Oil Limited—Canada’s largest petroleum refiner, a major producer of crude oil, a key petrochemical producer and a leading fuels marketer—and E3 Lithium are collaborating to advance a direct-lithium-extraction pilot in Alberta, exploring the redevelopment of an historic oil field into a potential new leading source of lithium for Canada’s... Read more →


Umicore and Idemitsu partner to develop high-performance catholyte materials for solid-state batteries

Umicore and Idemitsu Kosan Co., Ltd have agreed to develop jointly high-performance catholyte materials for solid-state batteries, combining their respective expertise in cathode active materials (CAM) and solid electrolytes, and aiming to provide the technological breakthrough to extend the driving range and thereby propel e-mobility. Catholytes combine cathode active materials... Read more →


Energy company RWE and steel producer ArcelorMittal have signed a memorandum of understanding to work together to develop, build and operate offshore wind farms and hydrogen facilities that will supply the renewable energy and green hydrogen required to produce low-emissions steel in Germany. The partnership centers on driving forward the... Read more →


ArcelorMittal published a concept for a low-carbon emissions steel standard to help incentivize the decarbonization of steelmaking globally and support the creation of market demand for physical steel products which would be classified as lower, and ultimately near-zero, carbon emissions steel. The creation of clear definitions for low-carbon emissions physical... Read more →


SABIC, a global leader in the chemical industry, has introduced NORYL NHP8000VT3 resin, a product well-suited for insulation film used in electric vehicle (EV) battery modules to help improve protection against short circuits and fire propagation. This high-performance, polyphenylene ether (PPO)-based resin is engineered with patented technologies to help meet... Read more →


Researchers at Beijing University of Technology have developed a thin free-standing composite solid electrolyte (CSE) film for solid-state lithium metal batteries. The film offers high ionic conductivity (2.76×10-4 S/cm at 25 °C) and wide electrochemical stability window (4.8 V vs. Li+/Li). In an open-access paper published in the RSC journal... Read more →


KAUST team develops process for tunable membranes for energy-efficient crude oil fractionation

Researchers at King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST) have developed a process for fabricating polytriazole membranes with 10-nanometer-thin selective layers containing subnanometer channels. The membranes, with their ultrathin tunable selective layers, offer an innovative membrane development solution for energy-efficient crude oil fractionation. The membranes are also advantageous for... Read more →


Canada-based Nouveau Monde Graphite (NMG) is commissioning its new anode material coating line with a nameplate capacity of 2,000 tonnes per annum “tpa). Completing the Company’s integrated anode material production, from ore to battery material, the coating module was built over H1-2022 to complement NMG’s portfolio of advanced materials. The... Read more →


Meta Materials Inc., a developer of high-performance functional materials and nanocomposites, signed a definitive agreement to acquire substantially all of the assets and intellectual property, including 67 issued and 22 pending patents, of Optodot Corporation for an aggregate of $48.5 million, comprising $3.5 million in cash and $45 million of... Read more →


AIMPLAS developing a lightweight battery case for EVs

AIMPLAS, the Plastics Technology Center, is working with the SMART5G Project on a new battery-swapping system for electric vehicles. The focus of the SMART5G Project, which is partly funded by Spain’s State Research Agency (AEI), is the design and development of a battery charging and replacement station for lightweight mobility.... Read more →


BASF expands CAM production capacity in China to 100 kt/year; multi-ton scale manufacturing for manganese-rich products

BASF Shanshan Battery Materials Co., Ltd. (BSBM), a BASF majority-owned company in China (BASF 51%; Shanshan 49%), is expanding its battery materials capacity in Changsha, Hunan Province, and Shuizuishan, Ningxia Province, to meet the fast-growing local and global demands of the electric vehicle (EV) industry. The expansion project will enable... Read more →


FREYR Battery concludes separator materials agreement through 2028, option to 2031

FREYR Battery entered into a reservation agreement with Changzhou Senior New Energy Materials Co., Ltd. and Senior Material (Europe) AB to supply battery materials for its Customer Qualification Plant (“CQP”), currently under construction in Mo i Rana, Norway, as well as for the company’s planned combined Gigafactory 1 & 2.... Read more →


NEO Battery Materials, Applied Carbon Nano Technology to partner on CNT coating for Si anodes

NEO Battery Materials signed a Collaboration Agreement (CA) with Applied Carbon Nano Technology Ltd. (ACN) to advance NEO’s pending patent related to carbon nanotube (CNT) coating technology for silicon anode materials. NEO and ACN will collaborate to expand mutual business opportunities in the electric vehicle (EV) industry including the CNT... Read more →


Alcoa Corporation announced a $51-million project to increase the production capacity at its Mosjøen smelter in Norway by 14,000 metric tons per year (mtpy). Alcoa’s Mosjøen location currently has a nameplate capacity of 200,000 mtpy, and the investment is expected to increase that capacity to 214,000 mtpy by the end... Read more →


OCSiAl launching a graphene nanotube synthesis facility in Serbia in 1H 2023

OCSiAl, the world’s largest manufacturer of graphene nanotubes (earlier post), is launching a graphene nanotube synthesis facility near Belgrade, Serbia, in the first half of 2023. The synthesis facility will become the core of the graphene nanotube industrial hub and will be accompanied by production lines of nanotube concentrates for... Read more →


Albemarle inaugurates new $500M lithium plant in Chile; doubling production and reducing water consumption by 30%/tonne

Albemarle Corporation, one of the largest lithium producers in the world and present in Chile for more than 40 years, inaugurated its third chemical conversion plant, La Negra III/IV, in Antofagasta, Chile, as one of the most modern chemical conversion plants in Latin America. With new technology, the plant is... Read more →


Rio Tinto has delivered first ore from the Gudai-Darri iron ore mine as the company brings online its first greenfield mine in the Pilbara, Western Australia, in more than a decade. Gudai-Darri will help underpin future production of the company’s flagship Pilbara Blend product. Pilbara Blend products are known for... Read more →


DARPA selects 3 university teams to investigate small-footprint recycling of critical elements in e-waste; RPOD

DARPA has selected multiple teams of university researchers for the Recycling at the Point of Disposal (RPOD) program. RPOD will evaluate the technical feasibility of recovering multiple low-volume fraction critical elements present in end-of-life electronics hardware (e-waste). The program seeks to develop small-footprint platforms with greatly reduced energy consumption and... Read more →


A team from MIT has developed a new approach to fabricating oxide-based solid-state electrolytes that are comparable in thickness to the polymer separators found in current Li-ion batteries without sintering: sequential decomposition synthesis (SDS). An open-access paper describing the approach and its application to processing Li garnets is published in... Read more →


Benchmark Mineral Intelligence: Lithium oversupply not likely

In response to a Goldman Sachs research note which suggested that the lithium market will pivot to a prolonged phase of surplus this year, Benchmark Mineral Intelligence took the unusual step (for the analytics firm) of outlining the reasons why it believes that call on lithium is incorrect. The industry... Read more →


Rio Tinto makes US$10M strategic equity investment in Nano One; strategic partnership on cathode materials

Battery materials company Nano One and Rio Tinto have agreed to enter into a strategic partnership, with Rio Tinto providing iron and lithium products, collaboration and a US$10-million investment into Nano One. This partnership and funding will accelerate Nano One’s multi-cathode (multi-CAM) commercialization strategy and support cathode active materials (CAM)... Read more →


The HVBatCycle research consortium—a partnership of industrial and scientific communities—has the goal of keeping cathode metals, electrolyte and graphite permanently in a closed material cycle (closed loop). Under the leadership of the Volkswagen Group, TANIOBIS GmbH, J. Schmalz GmbH and Viscom AG are working together with researchers from RWTH Aachen... Read more →


To improve the performance of Li-ion batteries in the extreme cold, researchers from Tianjin University, Beijing Jiaotong University, Karlsruhe Institue of Technology and other colleagues replaced the traditional graphite anode in a lithium-ion battery with a carbon-based anode material (O-DF) strategically synthesized to construct the Riemannian surface with a positive... Read more →


BASF has extended its series of Licity anode binders for Li-ion battery manufacturing. The second-generation styrene-butadiene rubber (SBR) binder Licity 2698 X F facilitates the use of silicon contents exceeding 20%. The binder is especially suitable for SiOx and Si-rich anodes. In addition to the established properties of the Licity... Read more →


NEO Battery Materials Ltd. signed a strategic memorandum of understanding (MOU) with Automobile & PCB establishing strategic investment and cooperation between NEO and A&P to advance the Korean mass production facility of NEO’s silicon anode materials for electric vehicle (EV) lithium-ion batteries. NEO Battery Materials Ltd. is a Vancouver-based company... Read more →


Rio Tinto and Salzgitter to study using Rio Tinto iron ore in SALCOS green steelmaking

Rio Tinto and the Salzgitter Group have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to work together towards carbon-free steelmaking by studying optimization of Rio Tinto’s high-quality Canadian and Australian iron ore products for use in Salzgitter’s SALCOS (SAlzgitter Low CO2-Steelmaking) green steel project in Germany. (Earlier post.) Under the SALCOS... Read more →


Biden invokes Defense Production Act to accelerate domestic manufacturing of clean energy

President Biden issued presidential determinations providing the US Department of Energy (DOE) with the authority to utilize the Defense Production Act (DPA) to accelerate domestic production of five key energy technologies: solar; transformers and electric grid components; heat pumps; insulation; and electrolyzers, fuel cells, and platinum group metals. Demand for... Read more →


Mitsubishi Chemical strengthens production capacity of graphite anode materials in China; possible production in Europe and US

Mitsubishi Chemical Holdings Group (MCHG) will increase the production capacity of natural graphite anode material from 2,000 tons/year to 12,000 tons/year at its Chinese subsidiary Qingdao Anode Kasei and affiliated company Qingdao Lingda Kasei. The production line is scheduled to start operation in the first half of fiscal 2023. MCHG... Read more →


LG Chem and KEMCO establish recycling and NCMA precursors JV

LG Chem will establish a recycling and precursor joint venture with KEMCO, a subsidiary of Korea Zinc Co., Ltd., to strengthen its battery material value chain. Precursors in this application context are raw material for cathodes manufactured by combining nickel, cobalt, manganese, aluminum, etc.; prescursors account for approximately 70% of... Read more →


LG Chem and Huayou Cobalt establishing JV to produce cathode material; 60,000 tons per year from Gumi plant

LG Chem is forming a cathode material production joint venture with Tianjin B&M Science and Technology (B&M), a subsidiary of China’s Zhejiang Huayou Cobalt (Huayou Cobalt) that specializes in cathode materials. The establishment of the joint venture further cements our vertical integration system with key raw materials to produce affordable,... Read more →


Stellantis secures low-emission lithium supply for N American EV production from Controlled Thermal Resources

Stellantis N.V. and Controlled Thermal Resources Ltd. (CTR) signed a binding offtake agreement for CTR to supply battery-grade lithium hydroxide for use in Stellantis’ North America electrified vehicle production. CTR’s Hell’s Kitchen Project in California’s Imperial County (earlier post) will recover lithium from geothermal brines using renewable energy and steam... Read more →


A team of researchers led by chemists at the US Department of Energy’s (DOE) Brookhaven National Laboratory has shown that using an appropriate amount of lithium difluorophosphate in a common commercial electrolyte enables stable cycling of nickel-rich layered cathode materials with an ultra-high cut-off voltage of 4.8 V. A paper on... Read more →


Renault Group and Managem Group, a Moroccan player in the mining and hydrometallurgy sector, signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) aimed at securing the supply of low-carbon and responsible cobalt sulfate for electric batteries. Under the terms of the agreement, Managem Group will supply 5,000 tonnes of cobalt sulfate per... Read more →


Nano One and BASF partner to develop next-gen cathode active materials for Li-ion batteries

Nano One Materials and BASF SE (BASF) have signed a joint development agreement (JDA) under which the companies will co-develop a process with reduced by-products for commercial production of next-generation cathode active materials (CAM), based on BASF’s HED-family of advanced CAM and using Nano One’s patented One-Pot process and metal... Read more →


Volvo Cars first car maker to join SteelZero initiative in support of fossil-free steel ambitions

Volvo Cars is the first car maker to sign up to the SteelZero initiative, which aims to increase demand for fossil-free steel and accelerate a transition to carbon neutrality in the global steel industry. As well as a long-term commitment to procure 100% fossil-free steel by 2050, SteelZero signatories also... Read more →


Nippon Shokubai and Arkema partner to mass-produce LiFSI electrolyte salt for a European battery supply chain

Nippon Shokubai and Arkema are joining forces to launch feasibility studies and establish a joint venture for the construction of an industrial plant for the production of LiFSI (Lithium bis(fluorosulfonyl)imide) ultrapure electrolyte salt, a key component of battery cells for electric mobility. Ultrapure and high performance LiFSI electrolyte salts, a... Read more →


Dalhousie researchers find low-voltage NMC532 cells have higher energy density than LFP, very long lifetime

Researchers led by Professor Jeff Dahn at Dalhousie University in Canada report that low-voltage NMC cells—particularly those balanced and charged to 3.8V rather than ≥4.2V—show better coulombic efficiency, less capacity fade and higher energy density compared to LFP cells and are projected to yield lifetimes approaching a century at 25... Read more →


Researchers at the Institute of Modern Physics (IMP) of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS) have developed an innovative method of pre-enriching uranium in seawater by membrane filtration. Uranium is the vital source for nuclear power generation. There are about 4.5 billion tons of uranium existing in seawater—1000 times more... Read more →


A study commissioned by the Aluminum Association and conducted by FEV North America, concludes that aluminum offers significant cost savings to automakers as net-zero priorities drive vehicle development, particularly in high volume programs. The study includes an analysis of three vehicle segments—city vehicle, family crossover and pickup truck—and finds aluminum... Read more →


Glencore to pay >$1.1B to resolve government’s investigation into bribery and commodity and price manipulation

Glencore International pled guilty in the Southern District of New York to violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA). In addition, as part of a separate resolution, Glencore Ltd., pled guilty in the District of Connecticut to a commodity price manipulation conspiracy. Together, Glencore and Glencore Ltd., both part... Read more →


Nano One to acquire Johnson Matthey Battery Materials Canada; JM takes stake in AEM electrolyzer pioneer Enapter

Battery materials company Nano One Materials has entered into a binding agreement to acquire all of the outstanding shares of Johnson Matthey (JM) Battery Materials Ltd. (JMBM Canada) for approximately C$10.25 million (US$8 million). The acquisition is fully funded and is on a cash-free, debt-free basis and is subject to... Read more →


Battery startup Sparkz, United Mine Workers of America announce labor-management agreement for W Va Gigafactory

Sparkz, a battery startup with exclusive licenses from Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) to produce domestic cobalt-free lithium batteries (earlier post), and the United Mine Workers of America (UMWA) signed a memorandum of understanding establishing a labor-management agreement that would mark one of the largest climate-tech union workforce partnerships in... Read more →


The world’s first truck manufacturer to do so, Volvo is now introducing fossil-free steel in its trucks. The steel is produced by the Swedish steel company SSAB (earlier post) and the heavy-duty electric Volvo trucks will be the first to include it. The steel from SSAB is produced using a... Read more →


Seamless electrified ecosystem required from rock to road to secure the North American automotive industry Battery development and production is strategically important for the transition to clean-energy economy and to remain globally competitive Sustainable lithium mining and processing is an essential component of this ecosystem Canada-based Snow Lake Lithium has... Read more →


Rough road for EV industry

By Brent Wilson, CEO of Galvanic Energy. America’s electric vehicle (EV) industry seems to have hit a rough patch of pavement in recent months. Lithium prices continue to rise, and no new domestic lithium sources have yet to be established. Even Tesla, despite its substantial efforts to hold the line... Read more →


Researchers at the Japan Advanced Institute of Science and Technology have improved the performance of silicon anodes in LIBs using a self-healing composite polymer binder for the silicon particles. The new binder improves stability and maintains a thin SEI layer. The results of the study are published in ACS Applied... Read more →


A development team from CoorsTek Membrane Sciences, in collaboration with international research partners, have successfully used ceramic membrane technology to develop a scalable hydrogen generator that makes hydrogen from electricity and fuels including natural gas, biogas and ammonia with near zero energy loss. A paper on the work is published... Read more →


LOTTE Chemical and Soelect sign MOU for JV, GWh-grade Li-metal anode production facility

Korea-based LOTTE Chemical and US-based solid-state battery component startup Soelect recently signed a Memorandum of Understanding to review the creation of a joint venture and the construction of a US$200-million GWh-grade lithium metal anode production facility in the United States by 2025. Soelect’s LiX lithium metal anode enables fast charge... Read more →


The American Iron and Steel Institute (AISI) awarded the “Automotive Excellence Award” to Ford Motor Company for its advanced high-strength steel (AHSS) innovations in the all-electric 2021 Ford Mustang Mach-E. The award was presented by John Catterall, vice president of AISI’s automotive program, at the 20th annual Great Designs in... Read more →