So far, most batteries for electric cars and stationary storage systems are made in China, and this is still true for the materials they need. The United States has responded to this geopolitically complex situation by introducing the Inflationary Reduction Act (IRA). Generous subsidies for batteries with materials from North America provides Even before that, however, longtime Tesla CTO JP Straubel and his startup Redwood Materials were eyeing more domestic production. Now Tesla partner Panasonic has announced plans to supply large quantities of battery materials from the US to its new factory in Kansas.
US material for Tesla’s battery partner
The IRA offers subsidies totaling $45 per kilowatt-hour of battery capacity. Effective costs for manufacturers are reduced by a third. They have a problem The battery supply chain in the U.S., like the rest of the West, has so far been sparse has However, Redwood, which Straubel founded before leaving Tesla in 2019, took on the issue early on.
The company originally started out as a recycling specialist, but announced in 2021 that it wants to produce primary materials as well until it has enough old batteries for recycling. Among electric cars, they prove to be the most durable than expected. Initially, Redwood wanted to produce enough anode copper foil and cathode materials for 100 gigawatt-hour batteries per year by 2025. An undisclosed proportion of the material for the cathodes is now set to go to Panasonic, which already cooperates with Tesla in Nevada for its battery factory in Redwood and plans another in Kansas.
For the first time, cathode material mass-produced in North America will be made into batteries in a factory in the United States. In a message From this week at Redwood. The new Panasonic factory is scheduled to be operational by 2025. According to the Japanese company at the end of October, batteries in the old 2170 design will initially be manufactured there – surprising, because after reports of successful tests in Japan Instead the Tesla-developed XL format is expected with the 4680. Still, most of Panasonic’s products in Kansas are likely aimed at longtime partner Tesla, which has so far mainly used 2170 batteries.
“Great Importance to Supply Chain in America”
News agency Bloomberg Straubel said According to their statement, the deal with Panasonic is worth several billion dollars over the years. The planned supply accounts for the bulk of the cathode material for the Japanese company and the announcement has major implications for the entire US supply chain. In this way, electric cars with Panasonic batteries will qualify for a $7,500 subsidy offered in the US from 2023 under strict conditions for the local area.
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