The following article was published by Sparkz on January 25, 2022.
NEXT-GEN BATTERY MAKER SPARKZ OPENS R&D AND PILOT FACILITY FOR ZERO COBALT, SOLID-STATE BATTERIES IN SILICON VALLEY
The Silicon Valley Pilot Plant will feature R&D, Scale-up and Pilot scale Manufacturing of Sparkz All Solid State Batteries; California Energy Commission support vital to decision
KNOXVILLE, Tenn.—Next-generation battery maker Sparkz Inc., will bring jobs and eventually manufacturing to northern California as it announced today it is opening a pilot facility in Livermore, CA to begin development, scale-up and pilot-scale manufacturing of its patented solid state battery technology. The company’s move was spurred by continued support from the California Energy Commission as Sparkz begins the steps to shift a second product line from development to commercialization.
“Sparkz is re-engineering the battery supply chain by eliminating cobalt and setting our sights on making other EV battery components in America. Our pilot production facility in Livermore is the first, exciting step towards advancing the development and scale-up of our solid state battery technology,” said founder and CEO Sanjiv Malhotra. “The California Energy Commission’s funding and continued support of Sparkz was an important step towards securing this facility. The CEC understands that to challenge China’s domination of next-gen battery production, and reach America’s clean energy potential, we need to build sustainable battery facilities in the U.S. Sparkz is quickly approaching this goal and putting Americans to work.”
Last year, Sparkz won a prestigious grant for $2.6 million from the California Energy Commission (CEC) to extend its development into solid state batteries. CEC funded the full amount possible for the first phase of the grant and will help Sparkz bridge the gap from their previous public funding awards to private investment.
The California facility will be its first pilot manufacturing plant in the U.S. as Sparkz begins expansion. Sparkz is also exploring plants in the Appalachia to begin manufacturing its zero cobalt, lithium ion batteries for OEM partners. The company has the exclusive licenses to produce zero cobalt, lithium batteries and is committed to producing them in the U.S.
Sparkz already has an R&D and Innovation Center in Knoxville, TN where it is conducting development and scale-up of lithium batteries based on zero Cobalt cathodes.
Founded by industry veteran and former U.S. Department of Energy executive Sanjiv Malhotra, Sparkz will begin commercialization of a high energy-density zero cobalt, American-made lithium-ion battery, while continuing its groundbreaking research and development focused on re-engineering the rest of the battery supply chain. Sparkz zero cobalt battery offers 2X the energy density compared to other zero cobalt batteries (LFP) being produced predominantly in China.
The company’s first commercial product will eliminate cobalt, traditionally used in the cathode of a lithium battery, with the objective of reducing the cost of lithium battery production in the U.S., while also eliminating a primary environmental concern, and reducing chokepoints created by a foreign supply-chain. Sparkz will be announcing its customer and OEM partnerships in the near future.
Sparkz was founded in late 2019. Sparkz has completed the transfer of 6 patents from the U.S. Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory, which continues to be an R&D partner.