Battery materials technology specialist Nano One (TSX:NANO / FRA:LBMB / OTC:NNOMF) has entered a joint development agreement with Johnson Matthey that will be focusing on next generation products and processes for the Johnson Matthey family of nickel-rich advanced cathode materials.
Johnson Matthey has already been making progress in the commercialisation of its sustainable battery materials business and is interested in Nano One’s patented One Pot process which can produce a type of cathode material known as a coated single crystal. This can deliver increased durability for batteries. The process will also enable these materials to be made directly from metal powders and lithium carbonate to address cost, energy and sustainability objectives across the entire lithium-ion battery supply chain.
Agreement will focus on developing materials and methods of production
Nano One said the agreement will focus on developing materials, methods of production and a detailed commercialisation study for pre-pilot, pilot and scaled up manufacturing. It represents the culmination of successful technical reviews and preliminary evaluations of both Nano One’s high nickel cathode materials and its IP, conducted over the last year.
The deal represents an alignment of both companies’ sustainability values and their vision to reduce environmental footprint and costs in a critical part of the battery materials supply chain, while also maintaining important performance and durability. This has been an area of focus for some time for Nano One CEO Dan Blondal, as he sees the Nano One IP forming an important link the the sustainability of battery supply chains.
Christian Gunther, Chief Executive for Battery Materials at Johnson Matthey, was very positive on the prospects of the agreement: “We are encouraged by Nano One’s innovations and believe its technology has the potential to offer significant advantages in terms of product performance, sustainability and manufacturing cost for our eLNO family of advanced cathode materials. We are looking forward to building business opportunities and a long lasting collaborative working relationship”.
Johnson Matthey plans to power next gen EVs from 2024
Johnson Matthey has been working on the commercialisation of its battery materials division, which it says it expects to be ready to power the next generation of hybrid and battery electric vehicles in 2024. Its first manufacturing plant, currently under construction in Poland, will initially supply 10,000 MT per year of eLNO, equivalent to 100,000 electric vehicles. The construction of a second plant is scheduled for later this year, and will initially supply 30,000 MT of eLNO per year.
Listen: Podcast with Dan Blondal, CEO of Nano One
Nano One confirmed that the companies have been working towards this deal for over a year. It is being hailed as “a milestone achievement” for the Canadian company, which says the alliance will lead it down the path of advanced materials testing at scale. The relationship is past the first introductions and preliminary testing and advancing the partnership is going to be a key area of focus.
The agreement also seems to fit nicely into the Johnson Matthey strategic direction – JM is known to be very interested in the potential of cathode materials and future evolution of that technology. This dovetails nicely with Nano One’s thought leadership and ongoing R&D activity in the area and is also important recognition of the originality of the Nano One technology in this respect.