Panasonic, Tesla’s fundamental battery associate since its earliest days, plans to make use of recycled supplies provided by a startup led by the electric-car maker’s former tech chief to provide lithium-ion cells in a extra sustainable, “closed loop” vogue.
Redwood Supplies, which already collects and recycles scrap and used battery parts from Panasonic, is to start supplying it with copper foil this 12 months to be used in making new lithium-ion cells at Tesla’s Gigafactory in Sparks, Nevada, the electronics firm stated Tuesday throughout its CES presentation. Reusing scraps and outdated batteries may help guarantee Panasonic meets a objective of sustainable manufacturing as output grows all through the 2020s, stated Allan Swan, president of Panasonic Power North America.
“Redwood is making a round provide chain for electrical automobiles and clear vitality merchandise right here in the USA, making them extra sustainable and driving down the price of batteries,” he stated in a video presentation. “By the tip of this 12 months we anticipate to incorporate Redwood’s copper foil produced from recycled supplies again into our new battery manufacturing.”
Based by JB Straubel, Tesla’s longtime chief expertise officer and a cofounder of the EV firm, Redwood is shifting rapidly to turn into a number one provider of recycled metals and supplies that it’s recovering from used batteries, battery scrap and electronics. Primarily based in Carson Metropolis, Nevada, close to the Gigafactory, the corporate has raised about $800 million to broaden its recycling enterprise as demand for EV batteries–and the expensive commodities wanted to make them–grows.
Redwood stated Panasonic’s use of copper foil from recovered materials would be the first such closed-loop battery manufacturing course of–during which batteries are recycled, remanufactured and returned to the identical manufacturing unit.
(For extra on Straubel and Redwood Supplies, see “Tesla Tech Whiz Is Mining Riches From Your Previous Batteries.”)
In September 2021, intently held Redwood stated it might make investments greater than $1 billion to assemble $1 a big U.S. plant to make supplies wanted for EV batteries by 2025, although it hasn’t introduced the situation but.
Throughout his time at Tesla, Straubel was instrumental in overseeing the design of the carmaker’s battery pack and motors, starting with the 2008 Roadster. He additionally helped arrange and run the large Gigafactory, the largest U.S. battery plant. He left Tesla in late 2019.
At the moment, Panasoninc produces about 2 billion battery cells a 12 months on the Tesla facility.
“And as a lot as we have scaled up manufacturing, the largest alternative lies in entrance of us,” Swan stated. “We’re taking a look at a 5 instances progress over the following decade, as increasingly automobiles go electrical.”