AZ: American Battery Factory Partners with Lead Intelligent Equipment for Tucson Gigafactory | Trade and Industry Development

AZ: American Battery Factory Partners with Lead Intelligent Equipment for Tucson Gigafactory

Mar 26, 2024

AZ: American Battery Factory Partners with Lead Intelligent Equipment for Tucson Gigafactory
by Press Release March 18, 2024
American Fork, UT—

American Battery Factory Inc. (ABF), an emerging battery manufacturer leading the development of the first network of lithium iron phosphate (LFP) battery cell gigafactories in the United States, announced its partnership with Lead Intelligent Equipment (LEAD) to secure custom automation equipment and machinery for use in its first gigafactory up to 20GWh in Tucson, Arizona.

The partnership marks a critical stage of the engineering and production design phase for the gigafactory. ABF hosted a groundbreaking ceremony for the facility in October 2023, initiating plans to produce battery cells for numerous applications and with the intention to optimize energy storage, destress the power grid and make true energy independence a reality. This key milestone is the next step on the critical path toward finalizing facility engineering details and beginning a robust construction effort in Arizona.

Produced by LEAD in close collaboration with ABF, the fully automated production line will be built from the ground up to provide a tailored solution for assembly. From mixing and coating to stacking and packaging, machinery including the slurry system, cathode and anode laser chamber and turnkey line equipment will cover every key step of the battery cell manufacturing process. In addition to the machinery, LEAD will initially provide onsite support including system installation, commissioning and training.

“Our collaboration with LEAD allows us to secure world-leading intelligent equipment, a significant milestone as we advance toward construction in the coming months,” said Jim Ge, CEO of American Battery Factory. “This brings us one step closer to our primary goal of onshoring a domestic supply chain and accelerating the growth of the country’s clean energy economy. In addition to ensuring a high-quality first production line, this lays the foundation for future phases at our facility while demonstrating a long-term, strategic relationship that will benefit our gigafactory network for years to come.”

In conjunction with this manufacturing equipment decision, ABF is working with blue-chip, U.S.-based companies to secure additional equipment, building controls, software, programmable logic controllers, cyber systems, construction and more. The company has previously announced partnerships with Honeywell, First Phosphate, Anovion, Celgard, FNA Group and Lion Energy to provide an array of solutions including digital platforms, lithium sourcing, anode and separator materials, and battery pack integration.

“Accelerating global layout has long been a core strategic goal for LEAD and collaborating with ABF is a key step for our expansion into U.S. and North American markets,” said Wang Yanqing, LEAD chairman. “We will jointly build an automated, efficient and intelligent gigafactory network, contributing to the growth of local lithium battery and energy storage industry in the United States.”

Due to the size of the machinery, decisions in the planning phase have considered the impact on everything from electrical to plumbing and the related geotechnical considerations which then impact the necessary size of the foundation. With a targeted completion in 2025, the first ABF gigafactory will include the company’s headquarters, a research and development innovation center as well as the initial 2 x 2 GWh factory module. The LFP battery cells produced onsite will be distinct from other lithium battery chemistries, incorporating the safest chemistry and environmentally friendly design while lasting up to 10,000 life cycles/30 years.

“In order to be fully cost competitive, we need a leading edge, fully automated process, and through our collaboration with LEAD we can achieve this,” said John Kem, president of American Battery Factory. “This is truly essential in our drive to utilize precision scanning and artificial intelligence to enable next-generation, smart manufacturing in Pima County, Arizona. By developing a domestic LFP battery cell supply chain, we will improve U.S. economic competitiveness, create high-paying quality jobs and help meet national security and sustainability goals.”

ABF is dedicated to making true energy independence a reality for the nation and plans to supply the demand for U.S.-made LFP battery cells deployed by battery pack integrators and energy storage solution providers across a range of markets including utilities, data centers, telecommunications, commercial/agricultural equipment, power tools, specialized markets and national defense requirements.

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