Redwood Materials has received a conditional loan commitment of $2 billion from the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Loan Programs Office (LPO) for the construction and expansion of a battery materials campus in McCarran, Nevada. This billion-dollar loan will be used to manufacture anode and cathode materials, in part from recycled materials, for the EV battery market.
The anode and cathode are the two most important elements in a battery. All the necessary metals for a battery, such as lithium, nickel, and cobalt, are housed in the cathode, making it a key component. Manufacturing the cathode requires intricate processes and specifications that are fundamental for the safety and performance of an electric vehicle battery. The anode, composed of copper and graphite, plays a major role in the charging of a battery. Approximately 80% of the material cost of a lithium-ion battery is comprised of these components combined.
The company plans to use both new and recycled feedstocks—comprised of critical materials like lithium, nickel and cobalt—to produce approximately 36,000 metric tons per year of ultra-thin battery-grade copper foil for use as the anode current collector, and approximately 100,000 metric tons per year of cathode active materials.
Redwood Materials has already signed an agreement with Panasonic for the recycling of Tesla’s Giga Nevada's scrap. The copper foil from the Nevada plant will be used for cell production at the Nevada Gigafactory and the cathode material for battery cell production in Panasonic's new Kansas plant, which is slated to open in 2025.
The company also recycles end-of-life batteries from consumer electronics like cell phone batteries, laptop computers, power tools, and other electronic waste, remanufacturing these feedstocks into critical components that help support the domestic lithium-ion battery supply chain.
Redwood Materials’ Nevada operation is the beginning of a larger ecosystem, bringing economic growth to the state, according to Bob Potts, the deputy director of the governor's economic development office.
This loan from DOE is expected to allow Redwood Materials to produce enough battery-grade copper foil and cathode-active materials to make 100 GWh of batteries annually. This is enough to produce over a million electric vehicles a year domestically.
Ultimately, Redwood Materials’ premise is closed-loop manufacturing, taking old batteries and making them into new ones.
0. “Redwood starts manufacturing anode copper foil” www.electrive.com, 10 Feb. 2023, https://www.electrive.com/2023/02/10/redwood-starts-manufacturing-anode-copper-foil/
1. “Redwood secures $2 billion DOE loan to manufacture battery materials in U.S.” pv magazine USA, 10 Feb. 2023, https://pv-magazine-usa.com/2023/02/10/redwood-secures-2-billion-doe-loan-to-manufacture-battery-materials-in-u-s/
2. “DOE Announces Conditional $2 Billion Loan For Redwood Materials Nevada Expansion” CleanTechnica, 10 Feb. 2023, https://cleantechnica.com/2023/02/10/doe-announces-conditional-2-billion-loan-for-redwood-materials-nevada-expansion/
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5. “US Loans $2 Billion to Redwood Materials for Battery Anode Foil Production” Mercom India, 10 Feb. 2023, https://mercomindia.com/us-loans-2-billion-redwood-materials-battery-production/
6. “Redwood Materials scores a new $2 billion loan to build out battery recycling facility in Nevada” CNBC, 9 Feb. 2023, https://www.cnbc.com/2023/02/09/redwood-materials-nabs-2-billion-loan-for-battery-recycling-in-nevada.html
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