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DOE Selects Group14 Technologies in Energy Storage Grand Challenge

Sept. 3, 2020
Group14's technology applies complex polymer chemistries to create elegant silicon-carbon nanocomposites.

Group14 Technologies, a provider of silicon-carbon composite materials for global lithium-ion (Li-ion) markets, recently announced it has been selected as a winner of the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Energy Storage Grand Challenge. It will receive US$3.96 million to integrate best-in-class synergistic technologies, delivering batteries that will meet the performance objectives for tomorrow’s electric vehicles (EVs).

The Vehicle Technologies Office of the DOE issued the challenge to accelerate scalable solutions to meet the demands for Li-ion-based storage. Group14, along with its project partners, was selected for its novel approach designed to deliver cost-effective, application-specific performance range across diverse markets including EVs, consumer electronics, medical devices, and aerospace.

Founded in 2015 as a spin-off from EnerG2, Group14 offers battery storage technology with a new elemental approach to produce ultra-high purity, high capacity silicon-carbon compound materials at low cost to power the electrified world. Group14’s breakthrough technology applies complex polymer chemistries to create elegant silicon-carbon nanocomposites that achieve the highest performing carbon anode materials.

"Group14 shares the DOE’s vision to increase the energy density, calendar life, and cycle life of Li-ion batteries and we’re pleased with the recognition for our innovative approach to a long-time challenge," said Rick Costantino, CTO, Group14 Technologies. "Globally, we’ve seen an increase in demand for longer-lasting, higher-performance Li-ion-powered devices and vehicles, and with this funding, we are shaping the leading edge of what is possible."

As demand for Li-ion batteries surges not only for EVs but also for small devices and large-scale propulsion, there is an immediate market need for battery performance that can be tuned to meet ideal use-case requisites. Group14’s nanomaterials technology, Scaffold Prime, is a patented, simple carbon chemistry process that transforms ultra-high purity raw precursors into silicon-carbon material, which is then tuned to the ideal electrochemical properties per given use case.

Group14, along with key project partner, Cabot Corp., will work together with Farasis, Silatronix, Arkema, and Pacific Northwest National Laboratories to commercialize this novel approach to meet the demand for higher-performance batteries.

"We are pleased to play a key role in this project by capitalizing on our breadth and depth of experience in energy materials while leveraging our broad range of carbons to improve the performance of Li-ion batteries," said Shen Yi, vice president and general manager for energy materials, Cabot Corp. "We respect Group14's leadership and innovation in the battery storage market and look forward to collaborating with them to push the boundaries for next-generation Li-ion batteries."

"Today we’re in the midst of a global movement toward the electrification of everything, from tiny medical devices and electronics to every possible flavor of transportation, including light and medium personal vehicles, heavy-duty transit, and beyond. The lynchpin in that global megatrend is Li-ion storage that is flexible enough to deliver reliable, high-quality performance as we pursue an electrified future," said Rick Luebbe, co-founder and CEO, Group14 Technologies. "We’d like to thank the DOE and our project partners for their support as we redefine the capabilities of Li-ion battery storage."

Group14 has begun to ramp up the development of new technologies and is scaling its team to meet the increasing demand for its product.

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