Enevate Raises $30 Million To Bring New High-Energy Batteries Into Volume Production

OCT 6 2015 BY MARK KANE 36

Enevate HD-Energy Technology

Enevate HD-Energy Technology

Enevate’s HD-Energy Technology

Enevate’s HD-Energy Technology

$30 million reinforced Enevate, a battery start-up founded in 2005, on its road to launch volume production of new high-energy lithium-ion batteries with novel silicon-dominant anode.

“Enevate Corporation, a technology leader in Lithium-ion (Li-ion) batteries, announces they have secured $30M in extended Series-B funding. The funding was led by Mike Lazaridis at Infinite Potential Technologies, Tsing Capital and Mission Ventures with participation by Presidio Ventures – a Sumitomo Corporation company.”

Enevate expects high energy density:

  • energy density of up to 300 Wh/kg

  • volumetric energy density up to and exceeding 1000 Wh/L

“Headquartered in Irvine, California, Enevate has developed advanced Li-ion batteries based on new materials and cell designs with significantly higher volumetric and gravimetric energy density in thinner and lighter form factors. Enevate’s novel HD-Energy Technology utilizes silicon-dominant composite anodes for rechargeable Li-ion polymer batteries which dramatically increases energy density by 25-50% over conventional graphite anode cells – giving over a decade of technology advancement as compared to the current rate of improvement of Li-ion technology. Enevate’s new batteries enable smartphones, tablets, ultra-thin notebook PCs, and drones with longer runtimes in less space and weight.”

Mike Lazaridis, co-founder of Infinite Potential Technologies and Blackberry said:

“Enevate is the first to have cracked the code on truly using silicon in a production battery. They are changing the conventional rules of the industry on Li-ion battery performance.”

Brian Wong, CEO of Enevate, added:

“This new funding allows Enevate to bring our technology and products developed for our first strategic investors and customers into high volume mass production. It also enables us to expand into new and exciting applications such as drones where high energy density is immensely valuable to extend flight times.”

Enevate HD-Energy Technology

Enevate HD-Energy Technology

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36 Comments on "Enevate Raises $30 Million To Bring New High-Energy Batteries Into Volume Production"

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Another week, another claim for breakthrough battery tech from a startup.

Of course, someday one of these “breakthrough” battery cells might actually have the properties claimed, and not have any carefully unmentioned deficiencies, such as short cycle life, high cost, or an operating temperature near the boiling point of water.

But don’t hold your breath.

Been disappointing hasn’t it. Not one for conspiracy theories; but, it has been known for decades, batteries are the key to clean cars and killing smog…and a large fortune. In the absence of poor science, gotta think special interest has been holding up their progress.

While better batteries would be nice, the EV they put them in can use a lot of improvement.
There is no reason an EV needs more than 100wthrs/mile giving a Leaf pack a 240 mile range.
Just in stronger than steel medium tech composites for lower weight, better crash protection, better aero, etc.
As for the battery claims it’ll depend on cycle life, etc in the real world.
A very old saying, ‘there are battery salesmen and lairs, but I repeat myself.’ by Edison IIRC

The actual quote attributed to Edison: “There are three types of people: Liars, damn liars, and battery salesmen.”

Yep. I sure hope one of them pulls it off but I continue to remain very skeptical.

It could also be that chemistry and physics are hard.

If it were simple, many would have done it long ago.

This has a much better chance than usual to work as claimed. They are not promising much of an advance, and I see no claim that it will work well in cars (it probably won’t).

Even assuming it works I’m not sure what their market is. How many drone batteries do we need each year?

Isn’t Mike Lazaridis the Blackberry CEO?

The graph says it all. I should spend 10 minutes creating my own graph for the Jamesenergy breakthrough LIBat3000, the next big thing in battery tech. It will feature a beach sand anode, because beach sand is everywhere, right? That will bring costs down to $1/kW and every home will have a 1MW backup.

You are wrong, beach sand is becoming rare. Very rare.

Read: “http://www.faz.net/aktuell/wirtschaft/unternehmen/attacke-der-nachbarlaender-singapur-hortet-sand-1436247.html”

Singapur steals sand in hughe masses from indenesia, thailand and Malysia. Whole islands have been drowned because of sand stealing. Sand errorsion is also naturally increasing when humans build buildings close to the beach. Look for palm beach sand problems, there are huge!

Invest in beach sand futures now; the price is sure to go up! 😉

Well, Silicon is the second most abundant element in the crust after Oxygen. So insinuating that there will ever be a shortage of Silicon is plain stupid.

BTW, I’m pretty sure the thing he’s holding in his hand is the bottom out of one of my reusable Whole Foods bags.

The negative view is rather astounding. People have been looking to use silicon in the anode for many years. It’s an obvious solution to the problem of limited storage at the anode.

$30M in venture funding is not chump change, especially in a disfavored tech area, and the venture companies are not exactly babes in the woods. They must have seen something that got them excited.

Not every advance will come from large companies like LG Chem and Panasonic, and not every small startup will turn out like Envia.

DonC said:

“The negative view is rather astounding.”

That is a direct result of the astounding percentage of B.S. in claims from battery tech startups. It approaches 100% complete B.S.

When is the last time one of these claims actually turned out to be true?

“My top advice really for anyone who says they’ve got some breakthrough battery technologies, please send us a sample cell, okay, don’t send us PowerPoint. Just send us one cell that works with all appropriate caveats; that would be great. That… sorts out the nonsense and the claims that aren’t actually true. Talk is super cheap; the battery industry has to have more B.S. in it than any industry I’ve ever encountered. It’s insane.” –Elon Musk, Nov. 5, 2014

There are good reasons to take a negative view.

Even the best claims are pathetic:
1) Energy density of up to 300 Wh/kg
2) Volumetric energy density up to and exceeding 1000 Wh/L

Tesla today is already at 240Wh/kg (cell level) and 800Wh/L.

Not very exciting claims from a 10-year old startup.

You really think VC firms are smart? Year 2001 webvan.com – delivers groceries and valued at billions. Now jump to 2015 instacart.com – delivers groceries and valued at billions.

Webvan was awesome!

Very sad that they disappeared.

Webvan and Peapod made the mistake of doing everything from scratch. Too much capital required.

Bosch’s purchase of the Seeo battery startup seems to be leading to real solid state batteries from Bosch within 5 years. Of course we can’t be sure until it actually happens but a huge company like Bosch isn’t likely to be blowing hot air.

Really guys? Real innovation is ALWAYS difficult. Lots of failures, lots of false starts – but eventually someone finds the key – and everyone forgets all the difficulty and worships the ones that made the breakthroughs (Edison, Ford, Wrights, Jobs, whoever)

Panasonic is already using silicon in their anodes. yawn

So is LG, but the article is saying the are using it more/better.

In 2014, we were at 250Wh/kg and 750Wh/l for cells in Teslas. I expect batteries with these two characteristics (300Wh/kg, 1000Wh/l) to be rolling out of the Tesla GF and many other battery factories around the world by end of 2017 for the Model 3 launch. They are going to need to scale up quickly to match the Panasonics of the world.

Elon says ‘send a sample cell, but I say ‘list the cell specs, size choices, and prices, and sell them to anyone!’ (Like me!)
why not have anyone with a battery project in mind, besides drones and cars using them, for tests?

‘In 1991, Sony commercialized the first Li- ion, and today this chemistry has become the most promising and fastest growing battery on the market.” …..

…. “In 1994, the cost to manufacture Li-ion in the 18650 cylindrical cell was over US$10 and the capacity was 1,100mAh. In 2001, the price dropped to below $3 while the capacity rose to 1,900mAh. Today, high energy-dense 18650 cells deliver over 3,000mAh and the costs are dropping further.”

This sounds like real progress to me. The 18650 cells are not only cheaper to manufacture but can hold nearly three times the energy of the 1991 cell.

Enevate’s silicone dominant composite anodes seek to increase energy storage by 25-50%. According to Musk, and others, battery technology is improving at about 8% per year. A 25% gain in efficiency from Enevate’s new anode composite would then correspond to about 3 years of “normal” battery progress. This sounds do-able.

Current 18650 cells are rated 3000 mA/hr.
A 25% gain in energy density would result in a 3750 mA/hr cell.

http://batteryuniversity.com/learn/article/lithium_based_batteries

Not silicone, silicon. There’s a huge difference there.

I heard somenone wants a silly cone… who wants a silly cone?

There are basically just 3 parts to a battery, the cathode, the anode and the electrolyte separator. Enevate’s research centers around improving the anode. Currently, anodes in Li-ion cells are made of graphite where it takes six carbon atoms to bind (store) just one lithium ion. Several additives have already been tried, including silicon-based alloys. Unfortunately, expansion of the anode during charge has been a problem. For stability reasons, at present, only a measured amount of silicon is added. Yes, other battery manufacturers have already doped the graphite anode with small amounts of silicon. But, what Enevate proposes to do is make the anode “predominantly” out of silicone. Their cell design uses “silicon-dominant composite anodes for the rechargeable Li-ion polymer batteries, which dramatically increases energy density by 25-50% over conventional graphite anode cells.” Once again, it takes six (6) carbon atoms to bind a single lithium ion. However, just one silicon atom can bind 4 ions of lithium. This means that a pure silicon anode could theoretically store over 10 times the energy of graphite. Apparently, Enevane has found a way to manufacture the cell anode using mostly silicon and less graphite.

There is no question that there is a good potential here for significant improvement in energy density, and thank you for explaining how that’s possible.

But silicon anodes and/or cathodes have already been demonstrated by other labs and/or university research groups. In fact, some (not just one) have demonstrated using carbon nanotubes or graphene to stabilize the material so it doesn’t crack apart when the silicon swells up.

The problem, as usual, is taking something that can be done very expensively in very small quantities in a lab, and figuring out how to scale that up to commercial production.

If all it took for an industry-transforming battery breakthrough was a lab demo, then such breakthroughs would happen about twice a month, and we would already all have been driving EVs for decades.

If there’s some sense in this technology, major players will just buy patents.

You can’t buy something that isn’t for sale.

The reason everyone focuses on the Anode is because the Cathode is already energy dense. This seems a good approach, to me, but I think the next big jump will be to solid state batteries, as others here, have already pointed out.

However, if this is really an advancement in the short term, then Tesla/Panasonic can easily license the Anode technology to add to what they already have.

Again, as others, here, have pointed out the time frame is short, up to 3 years for big profits, and after 5 years, the best hope would be someone bigger buys them out.

Once solid state gets low enough, cost wise, for gigafactory level production, its all over, because without the weight advantage not even the niche markets will remain.

People are looking for improvements in both anodes and cathodes. Neither one is close to ideal.

Wish them the best with steady break through so Tesla and Nissan can provide the world with real EV cars vs this recent onslaught of fuel cell crap from Toyota / Honda and now Hyundai.

World need better batteries sooner than latter before the temporary hydrogen mess gets a foot hold.

Enevate and many others, including most of the established battery makers are working to improve anode efficiency.

SeeO and Sakti and about twenty plus companies are working on a different part of the battery, the electrolyte, They are trying to replace the semi liquid paste with a solid layer that will not dry out over time.

Two different approaches to increasing battery efficiency.