At Group14, we intentionally built our company with the right footholds to scale quickly and ensure we could bridge the chasm from lab to commercial scale. From day one, we designed our entire manufacturing process to be at commercial scale.
We designed a modular model for manufacturing, using what we have coined Battery Active Material, or BAM modules. Each BAM module is self-contained with 2,000 t/y capacity. This modular design enables plug-and-play expansion anywhere on earth, ensuring that we can place multiple BAM modules together to make a BAM factory of any size and/or seamlessly drop-in individual BAM modules into partner factory lines. These modules ensure we can scale rapidly and globally. Further, all our products use the same manufacturing processes which means near consistent scaling for years to come. A modular approach to manufacturing enables reduced build time, little to no CapEx required, cost efficient production, rapid scale, configuration flexibility, and complete location independence.
Video Transcription: Group14 VP of Engineering, Chris Timmons
Manufacturing at Group14 is always top of mind when we’re working through developing a new material. When we start from new materials in the laboratory, we’re always focused on: “What is this going to look like?” “How is this going to scale?” “Is this something we could produce and meet the global demand for these materials?” We focus on these questions from the very beginning.
Our approach in general is to use a concept called modular manufacturing, which is where we identify the largest piece of equipment that is feasible to operate the process and within some comfortable margins of risk and understanding of the process, simply replicate that to be able to build facilities of, of larger or smaller sizes, depending on what the demand is.
And what we’ve done at Group14, we’re actually using relatively available equipment that can be found around the globe. And we can simply replicate these units and have what we call our production module, which produces about 2000 tons per year. Within that footprint—within one block of land—we could put as many of these modules as we can fit. And the beauty of our processes—we have the engineering and the design complete for each of those. And so, when we set out for a new development, it’s: “How many modules are we going to make?” “How much material do we need to make?” And we simply are just replicating that. It saves us a tremendous amount of time and engineering and planning to have that already baked so that we can go in and implement these programs very quickly and meet the global demand.
The elegance to our approach is that we’ve solved the hard challenges with the development, the design, and being able to prove the scalability of our process. And now it’s as simple as repeat, repeat, repeat, to build those facilities around the globe, which again enables us to get to the market very quickly.