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Newly launched Statevolt to build US battery plant; signs lithium deal with CTR

Highlights

54 GWh gigfactory could supply 650,000 EVs/year

Supply deal to facilitate microindustry in California

  • Author
  • Nick Lazzaro
  • Editor
  • Manish Parashar
  • Commodity
  • Electric Power Energy Transition Metals

Italvolt CEO Lars Carlstrom has launched a new US-based company, Statevolt, to construct a 54 GWh lithium battery gigafactory in Imperial Valley, California, and has signed a letter of intent with Controlled Thermal Resources to supply lithium to the proposed plant, the companies said April 19.

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"Today, we face a significant shortage in the amount of lithium that is required to meet the demand for electric vehicles," Carlstrom said in a statement. "We are pioneering a new, hyper-local business model, which prioritizes sustainability and resilience in the supply chain to solve this issue."

Statevolt is now conducting studies to determine the best location for the facility and its construction timeline. At full capacity, its battery output will be capable of powering about 650,000 electric vehicles annually.

Carlstrom is the founder of both Italvolt and Britishvolt, which are developing battery gigafactories in Italy and the UK, respectively.

Statevolt said its project team, along with Carlstrom, brings industry expertise, gigafactory design experience and established project partners to the California development plans.

Through the initial deal, CTR will supply lithium and geothermal power from its proposed Hell's Kitchen project near California's Salton Sea.

"We believe this model will offer Statevolt a significant advantage in producing lithium-ion batteries at scale, to meet booming consumer demand and create good-paying, highly skilled jobs," Carlstrom said.

The local lithium and power sourcing will minimize the environmental impact of battery production, ensure a more secure supply chain and facilitate the development of a microindustry in the area, Statevolt added.

"The extraordinary growth in electric vehicle adoption and the emerging demand for energy storage systems to provide clean power, highlights the urgent need to develop a strong and secure battery supply chain in the United States," CTR CEO Rod Colwell said in the statement. "CTR continues to develop its significant resource in response to this unprecedented demand, and we look forward to collaborating with Statevolt as we accelerate these efforts."

CTR previously reached a strategic investment and commercial collaboration deal with automaker General Motors in 2021 that involves lithium supply for EV battery production.

The Hell's Kitchen project will utilize a closed-loop, direct extraction process to extract lithium from geothermal brine. The first stage of the development is expected to produce 20,000 mt/year of lithium hydroxide by 2024, but it has a total estimated resource capacity of 300,000 mt/year on a lithium carbonate equivalent basis, according to CTR's website.