Statevolt Brings the U.S. One Step Closer to Producing Batteries on the Shores of the Salton Sea

David Shultz

David Shultz reports on clean technology and electric vehicles, among other industries, for dot.LA. His writing has appeared in The Atlantic, Outside, Nautilus and many other publications.

Statevolt Brings the U.S. One Step Closer to Producing Batteries on the Shores of the Salton Sea

Statevolt, a battery cell manufacturing company, has secured a site for their gigafactory in the Imperial Valley. As the American sister to their Italian counterpart, Italvolt, the company is seeking to rapidly expand its battery production facilities to the United States by capturing funding created by the Inflation Reduction Act.


Statevolt CEO Lars Carlstrom says he’s hopeful that they’ll be able to break ground on the 54 GWh factory as early as August or September 2024. In addition, Carlstrom hopes to have the first batteries rolling off the lines just 18 months later. Eventually, after a few years of ramping up, the factory should be able to produce 650,000 batteries annually, which would make it one of the largest of its kind in the country.

The company’s ultimate ambition is to produce their batteries using materials and supply chains entirely from the United States. Achieving this goal would make Statevolt’s cells incredibly attractive to U.S. electric vehicle manufacturers seeking to qualify for the Inflation Reduction Act rebates, which require that vehicles meet certain thresholds for domestic manufacturing and material sourcing.

Statevolt has chosen the Imperial Valley to host its plant due to the rich lithium reserves in the Salton Sea. As dot.LA reported last spring, the company has forged a partnership with Controlled Thermal Resources (CTR), one of the three major companies racing to commercialize direct lithium extraction in the region. Under the terms of the partnership, CTR would provide the lithium and Statevolt would produce the batteries and sell them to OEMs. CTR is still in the process of scaling their technology to the industrial level, but Carlstrom says he’s confident in their protocol and process. Adding that, “they are still on track with a 2025 timeline, when they can start producing both energy and lithium.”

Carlstrom and Statevolt had initially planned to put their gigafactory right next to CTR’s lithium extraction plant. But the permitting process for the location proved tricky, and with so much new funding up for grabs in the Inflation Reduction Act, the company wanted to accelerate their timelines and ultimately decided on a different, less complicated site, about half an hour a way.

The last piece of the puzzle in the region that Statevolt and CTR are looking for, Carlstrom says, is a refinery that can take the raw materials from the CTR plant and process it into battery grade lithium for Statevolt to use in the batteries. “If you need to send the lithium into China to refine it, and then send it back, then you're losing the hyperlocal narrative,” says Carlstrom. That narrative is important both from a carbon footprint perspective–shipping lithium across the Pacific and back is incredibly emission-intensive–but also may prove important to meet the increasingly stringent guidelines outlined in the Inflation Reduction Act.

If Carlstrom’s “hyperlocal” battery production vision works in the Imperial Valley, he says the company may try to replicate the experiment in other locations across the country in the coming years.

Subscribe to our newsletter to catch every headline.

Cadence

Snap’s Fourth Quarter Revenue Was the Company’s Slowest Growth Since Its IPO Six Years Ago

Samson Amore

Samson Amore is a reporter for dot.LA. He holds a degree in journalism from Emerson College and previously covered technology and entertainment for TheWrap and reported on the SoCal startup scene for the Los Angeles Business Journal. Send tips or pitches to samsonamore@dot.la and find him on Twitter @Samsonamore.

​Snap logo over a bunch of snap shots
Sebastian Miño-Bucheli

Snap Inc.’s trend of growing its user base but failing to adequately monetize them continues.

Read moreShow less
https://twitter.com/samsonamore
samsonamore@dot.la

Behind Her Empire: Lisa Sequino on the ‘Light Bulb’ Moment That Launched JLo Beauty

Yasmin Nouri

Yasmin is the host of the "Behind Her Empire" podcast, focused on highlighting self-made women leaders and entrepreneurs and how they tackle their career, money, family and life.

Each episode covers their unique hero's journey and what it really takes to build an empire with key lessons learned along the way. The goal of the series is to empower you to see what's possible & inspire you to create financial freedom in your own life.

Behind Her Empire: Lisa Sequino on the ‘Light Bulb’ Moment That Launched JLo Beauty
Lisa Sequino

On this episode of Behind Her Empire, JLo Beauty Co-founder and CEO Lisa Sequino discusses how she transitioned from her corporate career to a more entrepreneurial path.

Read moreShow less
RELATEDEDITOR'S PICKS
LA TECH JOBS
interchangeLA
Trending