electric vehicle batteries.
Straubel said the company already has more material than it could process from spent consumer batteries from lawnmowers, cellphones and toothbrushes, together with production scraps from lithium-ion battery manufacturing.
Former Tesla CTO and the mastermind behind many of Tesla’s core technologies, JB Straubel, started Redwood Materials in 2017 to greatly help address the necessity for more raw materials and to solve the issue of e-waste.
The company recycles end-of-life batteries and supplies battery makers and auto companies with raw materials in short supply as EV production surges around the world.
Now he’s turning his focus on recycling batteries for EVs, which he says is crucial to powering the power transition from fossil fuels to electricity without causing destructive climate change.
The ERI partnership combines complementary abilities, says ERI founder and Executive Chairman John Shegerian.
The company is rolling out expertise recycling old computers, monitors and a broad range of spent gadgets, recovering glass, steel, aluminum, plastic, copper, lead and also gold, silver and palladium.
There’s a great opportunity to recycle lithium and copper from those.
So I think each one of these has its own group of characteristics that we have to manage.
We have to merge a certain amount of virgin material—whatever we are able to get in the most green way—to augment the ramp-up while we must transition from fossil fuels.
Shegerian says Redwood Materials also will have access to ERI’s original equipment manufacturer partners that want to produce greener electronic products.
“The commodities made by Redwood Materials can significantly help with that process,” he adds.
Redwood’s founder, JB Straubel, was a co-founder and CTO at Tesla, where he was known as Elon Musk’s right-hand man.
And I think to essentially make meaningful innovation, it’s often not so conventional.
With the investment from Redwood Materials, Shegerian says ERI plans to expand.
- “We are going to continue steadily to grow throughout North America together with internationally.
- Electrification is projected to increase lithium-ion demand over 500% by 2030.
- Within a single OEM, there’s so a lot of things to do and demands on your time and capital.
- In the longer term, it’s increasingly likely to be about scale and efficiency of scaling.
- And the scale of all this is
- But if you look at just the very simple data of how many cars on the road are actually electric today, I think it indicates how far we have to go.
Redwood happens to be tripling how big is its Carson City facilities, in fact it is looking to add 500 jobs as it develops its recycling technology.
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I want to make sure that we are focused on the bigger picture, which is figuring out how we enable a transition to sustainability overall.
And therefore, we are really rooting for whatever battery technology eventually ends up getting the best performance.
There’s just a whole ton of chemistry, chemical engineering, and production engineering that has to happen to create and refine all of the components that go into a battery.
Even your question sort of hints at it—it’s like, why did you leave this glamorous, exciting high-performance car company to go focus on garbage?
I believe entrepreneurship involves being truly a tiny bit contrarian.
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By 2030, the company expects to increase its annual battery materials production to 500 GWh, enough to power five million electric vehicles.
Redwood Materials, an organization founded by Tesla co-founder JB Straubel, announced that it’ll supply high-nickel cathode material for battery cell production in Panasonic’s new Kansas plant.
Redwood Materials may be the brainchild of JB Straubel, the longtime chief technology officer at Tesla who left to focus on his recycling startup in July 2019.
A long time before others, Straubel foresaw a looming shortage of battery materials in the fledgling electric-vehicle era.
Today, Redwood Materials is working with the likes of Panasonic, Toyota, Volkswagen, Ford and Volvo on a variety of projects.
His stories have appeared in THE BRAND NEW York Times, TV Guide, Cosmo, Details, and Good Housekeeping.
Previously, Jonathan served as VP of Content for the GSN , where he produced original digital video series.
Redwood Materials says it uses proprietary technology to recover elements
Panasonic Turns To Jb Straubel’s Redwood For Recycled Battery Materials To Provide
The cathode material makes up around a third of an EV battery power, and Redwood Materials will give a Panasonic factory in Kansas City, Kansas, with the processed mineral starting in 2025.
Additionally, the majority of the Kansas City plant’s battery cells will undoubtedly be destined for all of us automaker Tesla — another major partner of Redwood’s.
Electric vehicle batteries are quickly becoming just about the most important commodities in the USA.
Mineral processing operations are largely happening overseas, but one US company developed by a Tesla founder and previous CTO is currently delving into cathode and anode processing.
In the long run, it’s increasingly going to be about scale and efficiency of scaling.
The physical size of the facilities is massive, the volume of materials is massive, and the capital requirements are actually massive aswell.
However, the rate that we need to ramp it up and the rate that we need to use it to make this transition happen will be a problem.
And that’s where I think we will see some challenges in the supply chain ahead.
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Redwood recently announced plans to create a new $3.5 billion battery manufacturing and recycling factory in SC.
The 600-acre plant, which will be located just outside Charleston “in the center of the ‘Battery Belt,’” will employ approximately 1,500 people over 10 years and will produce 100 GWh of cathode and anode components annually.
Recycling alone won’t take the company to most of these production numbers, though Redwood is also likely to expand its recycling operations.
When I visit, cranes and trucks trundle through an industrial ballet at the website, heaving soil and building materials around an enormous expanse of carved-up dirt.
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