Solid-state battery specialist and Volkswagen partner QuantumScape announced progress in a letter to shareholders. For example, QuantumScape has produced a 16-layer solid-state cell capable of 500 charge cycles and increased separator film production. Recently, QuantumScape also signed a deal with a third major automaker.
While QuantumScape left the manufacturer undisclosed, they said they would supply cells with a capacity of 5 MWh from the pre-pilot production. The agreement also paves the way for the possible establishment of a joint venture in the US with up to 50 GWh of annual cell production capacity, the company said. The potential JV is subject to
technical milestones and mutual agreement.
Therefore scaling will be key and QuantumScape in their letter lists ramping up the production of separator films as a “key goal” for 2022 with peak weekly starts of over 8,000. They recorded average weekly starts of over 3,700 exiting Q1 2022, compared to less than 2,000 exiting Q4 2021, thanks to improved tooling.
A-samples are to be delivered to carmakers for validation before the end of this year. QuantumScape only states that these will consist of “dozens” of layers – so the leap to 24 layers may get out by then. B-sample cells are then scheduled to enter testing in 2023. These differ from the A-samples, among other things, in that production processes from series production are already being used. QuantumScape will make the A and B samples on the QS-0 pilot line in San José.
At the end of July 2021, QuantumScape had begun testing ten-layer cells, which replaced the previous single- and four-layer cells. It is not only in the number of layers that the company has made progress. Earlier this year, QuantumScape had released data showing that its solid-state lithium metal battery cells retained more than 80 per cent of their initial energy after 400 cycles of 15-minute fast charges. So now, 500 cycles have been achieved, according to the shareholder letter.
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