Tuesday, January 18, 2022

General Motors announces it will build a new cathode plant in North America

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General Motors introduced that it will assemble a new cathode manufacturing unit in North America for its electrical automobile batteries. The manufacturing unit, which will be constructed underneath a three way partnership with South Korea’s Posco Chemical, will course of cathode energetic materials (CAM), which represents about 40 % of the price of an EV battery cell.

Much like the remainder of the auto trade, GM is racing to spice up its EV choices, vowing to spend $27 billion on the event and manufacturing of 30 new electrical automobiles by 2025. To accomplish this monumental feat, the corporate is attempting to get a stronger grasp on its provide chain, which incorporates battery manufacturing. The firm has mentioned it will spend over $4 billion on the development of two battery factories in North America in partnership with South Korea’s LG Chem.

The new cathode facility will provide battery supplies to the 2 factories which are at present underneath building: the Ultium Cells amenities in Lordstown, Ohio, and Spring Hill, Tennessee. GM can be planning to build two extra cell amenities by mid-decade, the corporate has mentioned. GM didn’t disclose the placement of the new cathode facility however mentioned it can be open by 2024.

The majority of EV battery cathodes are made with NCM — nickel, cobalt, and magnesium. The Ultium batteries will add aluminum — so NCMA — and scale back the cobalt content material by 70 %.

Cobalt is a key part of batteries, however it’s additionally the most costly materials in the battery and mined underneath circumstances that always violate human rights, main it to be known as the “blood diamond of batteries.” As a outcome, GM and different firms, like Tesla, are speeding to create a cobalt-free battery.

“We would like to get out of cobalt altogether and have a zero cobalt situation,” mentioned Doug Parks, GM’s government vice chairman targeted on international product improvement, buying and provide chain. “We’re going to start with old Ultium NCMA chemistry, and then we will we will advance as we go forward as quickly as possible to improve either the performance or the cost of the battery cell.”

This is the most recent announcement from GM relating to its efforts to spice up its EV manufacturing by vertical integration. The firm additionally not too long ago struck a deal to supply lithium, a key ingredient in electric-car batteries, from geothermal deposits in the US. And it’s constructing a new 300,000-square-foot battery analysis facility in Michigan to assist it understand its mission of constructing electrical automobile batteries which are longer-lasting, faster to cost, and extra sustainable for the surroundings.

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