ENERGY STORAGE

Natron Energy begins commercial-scale operations at US sodium-ion battery factory

May 1, 2024

Sodium-ion battery technology company Natron Energy has announced it has begun commercial-scale operations at its sodium-ion battery manufacturing facility in Holland, Michigan in the US.

Natron has invested over $40 million to upgrade the $300 million facility and convert existing lithium-ion battery manufacturing lines to sodium-ion battery production. Contributing to this investment, US government agency ARPA-E [Advanced Research Projects Agency–Energy] provided $19.8 million through the Seeding Critical Advances for Leading Energy technologies with Untapped Potential (SCALEUP) programme. The Holland facility will support more than 100 local jobs by the end of 2025.

“Natron’s milestone marks the first-ever commercial-scale production of sodium-ion batteries in the US,” the company said in a statement. “These batteries offer higher power density, higher cycles, a domestic US supply chain, and unique safety characteristics over other battery technologies, and are the only UL-listed sodium-ion batteries on the market today.”

Colin Wessells, founder and co-CEO, Natron Energy, commented: “We are thrilled to announce the opening of the first commercial sodium-ion battery manufacturing facility in the United States. Sodium-ion batteries offer a unique alternative to lithium-ion, with higher power, faster recharge, longer life-cycle, and a completely safe and stable chemistry. As we now begin to scale production, Natron will strengthen the domestic battery supply chain and create high-quality clean energy jobs in Michigan. The electrification of our economy is dependent on the development and production of new, innovative energy storage solutions. We at Natron are proud to deliver such a battery without the use of conflict minerals or materials with questionable environmental impacts.”

Wendell Brooks, co-CEO, Natron Energy, added: “Our new Holland facility will significantly accelerate Natron’s growth trajectory, positioning the company to lead the next battery revolution. As the world progresses toward a future powered by clean, renewable energy, continued innovation in the energy storage sector remains an absolute necessity. In addition, we expect our battery solutions will be used to power the explosive growth in data centres used for artificial intelligence. At Natron, we are proud to be leading the development of revolutionary sodium-ion battery technology. With the start of commercial-scale production here in Michigan, we are well-positioned to capitalise on the growing demand for efficient, safe, and reliable battery energy storage.”