Redwood starts manufacturing anode copper foil


The recycling company Redwood Materials, founded by former Tesla CTO JB Straubel, has started producing anode copper foils. In addition, Redwood has received a conditional commitment from the US Department of Energy for a $2 billion loan for battery materials.

The production of recycled anode copper foils was initially announced about a year ago, and began in January at Redwood’s Nevada plant, the company now says. When the announcement was made, it was still said that production would start “soon” – which has now become quite exactly twelve months.

The first customer for copper foils made from recycled material is Panasonic. According to an agreement signed in 2022, the Japanese manufacturer will use these foils in Gigafactory 1 in Nevada, which is operated together with Tesla – like the Redwood plant, it is located in the Tahoe Reno Industrial Center.

Redwood expects to begin cathode qualification this year. Here, too, Panasonic will be one of the first customers when series production starts – but not for the Giga Nevada. The Redwood cathode material is to be used in Panasonic’s new plant in Kansas, which is scheduled to go into operation in 2025.

Redwood Materials has also received a conditional commitment from the US Department of Energy (DOE) for a US$2 billion loan, which the company plans to draw down in tranches for the construction of its new ‘Battery Materials Campus’ in South Carolina.

“DOE’s support for this project represents a critical milestone in the United States’ commitment to establishing a domestic battery supply chain rooted in manufacturing and American innovation,” the company writes. “By localizing this critical supply chain and producing anode and cathode components at a gigafactory-scale in the US for the first time, Redwood is addressing perhaps the most important supply chain need in electrification and ensuring that the United States can deliver on its clean energy and sustainable transportation plans.”


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