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#TM1 Technology Minerals – Britishvolt gets £100m boost to build UK’s first large-scale ‘gigafactory’

The deal to build an electric car battery plant near Blyth will bring up to 3,000 jobs to the area by 2028

A rendering of a Britishvolt plant set to be built near Blyth, Northumberland.
A rendering of the electric car battery Britishvolt plant set to be built near Blyth, Northumberland. Photograph: Britishvolt

The government’s Automotive Transformation Fund will invest alongside asset management company Abrdn and its majority-owned property investment arm, Tritax, to fund a sale and leaseback deal for the huge building that will house the electric car battery factory, near Blyth in Northumberland.

Peter Rolton, Britishvolt’s executive chairman, said: “The UK automotive industry needs a local source of batteries. Chinese or other Asian imports are not going to be an option. There will be very, very significant shortfalls of batteries. We are absolutely vital to maintain the UK industry and support those jobs.”

An artist impression of the Britishvolt factory in Northumberland.
An artist impression of the Britishvolt factory, the first full scale UK battery gigaplant. Photograph: Britishvolt/PA

Britishvolt is one of two major UK battery manufacturing projects that has secured funding, alongside an expansion of an existing plant at Sunderland owned by China’s Envision that supplies to Nissan.

The company is hoping to build the plant rapidly with the aim of supplying a large part of the UK car industry’s needs as it transitions from internal combustion engines to electric cars that produce zero exhaust emissions. It is in talks with several potential clients, and sportscar maker Lotus has signed a memorandum of understanding, Bloomberg reported on Thursday.

A new electric vehicle charging station in Slough.
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The plant will employ about 3,000 workers when it is at full capacity in around 2028. The first batteries are scheduled to start production in 2024 to take advantage of rising demand ahead of the UK’s 2030 ban on new cars without a battery.

The government and Britishvolt declined to detail the size of the government investment, citing commercial confidentiality. However, a source with knowledge of the negotiations said it was worth about £100m.

The government-funded Advanced Propulsion Centre calculates that the UK will need to produce batteries with a capacity of 90 gigawatt hours (GWh) a year if it is to retain a car industry of a similar size. Current UK production capacity is less than 2GWh, but Britishvolt hopes to produce 30GWh.

Local authorities in the West Midlands and Somerset are trying to attract investors to two more potential battery manufacturing sites. The West Midlands site at Coventry airport last week gained pre-emptive planning permission.

Rolton said: “The company was still working on the timing of a planned stock market listing which will raise the money to build the production line. The full project is expected to cost £3.8bn, but the government backing has already helped in conversations with potential investors.”

 

Britishvolt has previously won backing from Glencore, the FTSE 100 miner, and preparatory construction work at the 93-hectare site has begun.

Securing investment in UK-based battery manufacturing has been an important goal for the government. The prime minister, Boris Johnson, has on several occasions referred to his hopes for the project as part of his plans to “level up” parts of the country that have missed out on investment in recent decades.

The plant will be based in the constituency of Wansbeck, narrowly retained by Labour in the 2019 general election. It is next door to Blyth Valley, a seat formerly part of Labour’s “red wall”, which voted in a Conservative MP for the first time in that election.

Johnson said the plan “is a strong testament to the skilled workers of the north-east and the UK’s place at the helm of the global green industrial revolution”. He added that the factory will “boost the production of electric vehicles in the UK”.

Rolton said Britishvolt had taken part in a jobs fair in the area which prompted “queues round the block”, while some parents even took children out of school to attend. “That’s what it means for the area,” he said.

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New UK Investor Magazine podcast out now discussing Burberry #BRBY, the Metaverse #META, Technology Minerals #TM1 and UK Inflation with Alan Green

New UK Investor Magazine podcast out now discussing Burberry, the Metaverse, and UK Inflation with

Alan Green

We discuss:

– Burberry #BRBY

– Wetherspoons #JDW

– Technology Minerals #TM1

– Microsoft #MSFT

Burberry, the Metaverse, and UK Inflation with Alan Green

Technology Minerals – Recycling Blueprint for the EV and Battery Industry a Racing Certainty?

By Arjun Thakkar and Alan Green

Along with Christmas parties, the most oft discussed topic in 2021 was almost certainly the COP26 conference, net zero carbon neutrality, sustainability, climate change and other aspirational matters pointing to an internal combustion engine free world. There’s plenty of awareness of the issues surrounding climate change and the environment, but the simple facts are that the leading economies around the world (never mind the developing nations) are woefully underprepared to tackle these issues and create the circular economy required to support sustainability.

(more…)

Technology Minerals #TM1 and Recyclus Group open UK laboratory

Technology Minerals Plc (LSE: TM1), the first listed UK company focused on creating a sustainable circular economy for battery metals, is pleased to announce it has opened its first laboratory suite at its new battery processing facility in Wolverhampton, UK.  

The new laboratory enables Recyclus Group, a 49% Technology Minerals owned company, to carry out its own in-house testing for both lead acid and lithium-ion (“Li-ion”) battery recycling processes.  

The testing facility comprises specialised equipment including an X-ray fluorescence machine (“XRF”) used for measuring the elemental composition of the various battery products. This technology is especially important for examining the lead content of the lead oxide paste and the levels of sulphur which, in turn, ensures the quality of the end product.

The laboratory also houses a Gas Chromatograph with an auto sampler which – when used in conjunction with wet chemical analysis – is crucial in establishing lithium levels and monitoring the in-process products to avoid any potential contamination. The facility has fire-safe, lockable cabinets for housing all the essential analytical chemicals used in the close monitoring of both the lead and lithium recycling processes. 

Robin Brundle, Chairman of Technology Minerals, said: “The opening of a new specialised laboratory at our battery processing facility in Wolverhampton is in line with our strategy and development programme for commissioning the first of our lithium-ion plants. It is another step towards our goal to significantly increase our recycling capacity in 2022 for lead-acid and lithium-ion batteries and ultimately help enhance the UK’s capabilities for battery recycling.”

Enquiries

 

Technology Minerals Limited

Robin Brundle, Executive Chairman

Alexander Stanbury, Chief Executive Officer

+44 20 7618 9100

 

Alfred Henry Corporate Finance Limited

Nick Michaels

+44 203 772 0021

Arden Partners Plc

Ruari McGirr

+44 207 614 5900

Luther Pendragon

Harry Chathli, Alexis Gore, John Bick

+44 20 7618 9100

Technology Minerals Plc 

Technology Minerals is developing the UK’s first listed, sustainable circular economy for battery metals, using cutting-edge technology to recycle, recover, and re-use battery technologies for a renewable energy future. TM is focused on extracting raw materials required for Li-ion batteries, whilst solving the ecological issue of spent Li-ion batteries, by recycling them for re-use by battery manufacturers. With the increasing global demand for battery metals to supply electrification, the Group will explore, mine, and recycle metals from spent batteries. Further information on Technology Minerals is available at www.technologyminerals.co.uk  

Recyclus Group Ltd  

The demand for the raw materials used in battery manufacturing is anticipated to substantially increase. Recyclus Group Limited provides a national recycling initiative that supports the transition to carbon neutrality. Recyclus Group’s battery recycling capacity will prove essential in the shift from fossil fuels to electric transportation. Through its strategic support, Recyclus is an integral component to the recycling of lithium-ion and lead-acid batteries and is a significant contributor towards the circular economy of battery metals. Further information on Recyclus Group is available at www.recyclusgroup.com  

UK Investor Magazine – Top Stock Picks for 2022 with Alan Green

investor

 

Alan Green joins the UK Investor Magazine Podcast to deliver his top stock picks for 2022.

We touch briefly on the economic outlook for 2022 before delving into the companies Alan will be keeping a particularly close eye on next year.

Top picks for 2022:

Technology Minerals #TM1

Power Metal Resources #POW

Blue Star Capital #BLU

IQE #IQE

Poolbeg Pharma #POLB

Tertiary Minerals #TYM

Special Mentions:

Coinsilium #COIN

Cadence Minerals #KDNC

A number of these companies have been discussed in greater detail on the Podcast this year so do check back through for great insight on companies mentioned.

Top Stock Picks for 2022 with Alan Green

Technology Minerals #TM1 and the Recyclus team in attendance at this weeks London EV Show

Technology Minerals and the Recyclus team in attendance at this weeks London EV Show @londonevshow

The event offers an exclusive platform for companies in the EV industry to showcase the latest products, services and innovations.

Visit Technology Minerals #TM1 at Stand G5 at the London EV Show

Come and meet the Technology Minerals #TM1 team on Stand G5 at the London EV Show. The show runs from today (Dec 14) to Thurs Dec 16 at the Business Design Centre, 52 Upper St, Islington, London N1 0QH.

      

#TM1 Technology Minerals – Q&A: Building battery recycling capabilities

Technology Minerals is a London-based, LSE-listed company creating a circular economy for battery metals. The company, which is also engaged in extracting raw materials required for lithium-ion (Li-ion) battery cathodes, plans to increase its lead-acid battery recycling capability to 16,000 tonnes per annum by 2022, and 5,000 tonnes per annum for Li-ion batteries in the same time frame.

Robin Brundle, chairman of Technology Minerals plc, outlines TM’s plans to recycle batteries on an industrial scale.

 

We start full industrial-scale production in early 2022 with two plants, the first, which is currently being installed and will be ready for commissioning in January, is focused on lead-acid battery recycling. The second on lithium-ion battery recycling is now in a manufacture test phase and will be ready for commissioning in February 2022. The sites are both located in the Midlands.

Our recently announced partnership with Slicker Recycling provides a full UK footprint for safe custodianship of collection, of all types of li-ion batteries to our processing plants as we start to build front end inventory during 2022 and grow production. In addition, the wider Slicker group is also very strong in Europe offering a mirror image of the services they offer in the UK. So that could be, at the appropriate time, important for us as we build commercial relationships in Europe.

Can you explain how your recycling process works? How do you get the value out of the so-called ‘black mass’?

The process, for both lead-acid and li-ion, starts through our nationwide collection process and the safe delivery of the batteries to our processing plants in the Midlands.

The li-ion process is industry-leading, and we own the IP on both the process and the plant design. Our process safely deals with all five types of li-ion battery sciences and in any mix or combination at the same time. The plant is modular in design and thus cost effective and each plant can process 5,000 tones per year on a single shift basis. The plant is UK designed, UK manufactured and serviced by a UK company. What sets us apart is that our process does not use pyrolysis or saline solution, and this removes risk to the working environment.

On the lead-acid side, we are industrialising and mechanising a long-established industry that has traditionally been very labour intensive. The efficiencies of the plant combined with our processes really does modernise the sector and will assist in reducing the number of batteries that are either incinerated or worse still sent to landfill.

With regard to black mass, we are working on an end solution for the UK market – it is notable that as it stands – the UK doesn’t currently have the capability to process the black mass back to its constituent parts.

Until the UK has this capability, we have global offtake partners with whom we have already shared testing samples from our process. We already have these offtake partners in place as we build black mass production through 2022.

 

Are your processes patented and do you intend to license them?

On the li-ion plant, we are currently reviewing our patent applications for both the plant and the process. We are focused on retaining our early to market advantage and will take the necessary steps to do so. The final design and build of the plant have taken nearly two years and is testament to the engineering innovation that we have to hand in such depth in the UK.

UK set for industrial scale battery recycling

On the lead-acid side, we are currently writing a new process to surpass any previous patents that exist. The plant has been sourced from the UK, Europe and Brazil and takes circa eight months from order to completion.

What relationship do you have with Gigafactories?

We have a number of ongoing discussions with the battery OEMs which are at various stages of maturity, and also the tier one auto manufacturers to become their respective partners of choice. Certainly, we aim to build out our plants in line with customer requirements and, where appropriate, creating a bespoke recycling capability on-site which utilises the benefits of our modular processing plant and technology.

 

You are currently looking at Li-ion batteries from EVs. Do you plan on using other sources (laptops, tablets etc) of battery?

This proprietary process enables us to put all five sciences of lithium-ion batteries through our process, whether that is from portable devices, laptops, e-bikes, through to the heavier end of automotive and energy stations. Each battery type has a slightly different science, and our process allows us to safely recycle any combination through to the output of the ‘black mass’ material, which is rich in a number of the key metals which goes onto the final process of refining back to their respective form.

 

What markets are you targeting?  

Because of the ability of the process to handle all five sciences in lithium-ion batteries we are not restricted as to sector or industry, from the perspective of local authorities looking for safe handling and recycling, through to the automotive OEMs, fleet management and auto dealership networks we have the logistic solution and the re-purposing and then recycling engineering process that really does embrace a circular economy solution for end-of-use and end-of-life batteries.

 

More broadly, what percentage of your mined products do you expect to introduce into the mix over time? 

Our whole strategy is focused on the circular economy, and specifically in the battery sector, and as such we are targeting 100 per cent of all materials being used, be that mined or recycled.

The focus for our recycling operation longer term is on the UK and European markets with a view to grow to 20,000 tonnes of lithium-ion batteries and 60,000 tonnes of lead-acid batteries respectively per annum over the next decade.

The largest market opportunity is in the automotive industry, with 800,000 tonnes of battery per year, equating to ~70 per cent of the battery market in Europe

Lead-acid is the largest battery type with 831,000 tonnes, comprising over 72 per cent of the battery market in Europe.

UK Investor Magazine podcast – Berkeley Group #BKG, UK Property, Technology Minerals #TM1, Revolution Bars #RBG & Conroy Gold #CGNR with Alan Green

investor

UK Investor Magazine – Berkeley Group #BKG, UK Property, Technology Minerals #TM1, Revolution Bars #RBG and Conroy Gold #CGNR with Alan Green.

 

 

Berkeley Group, UK Property and Conroy Gold with Alan Green

Technology Minerals #TM1 – Recyclus and WMG Partnership

Technology Minerals Plc (LSE: TM1), the first listed UK company focused on creating a sustainable circular economy for battery metals, is pleased to announce that Recyclus Group, a 49% Technology Minerals owned company, has agreed an engineering development partnership with WMG at the University of Warwick, a leading academic group providing research, education and knowledge transfer in engineering, management, manufacturing and technology. 

WMG and Recyclus have created an Engineering Doctorate (“EngD”) focused on battery recycling technologies and a transfer of current and future applications. The EngD encompasses a four-year programme supporting talented individuals at varying career stages to develop new critical skills sets in this sector and will also focus on addressing contemporary industrial and technical challenges across the battery recycling sector.

Recyclus has developed the first industrial scale process that can work across all of the key Lithium-ion (“Li-ion”) battery technologies and Recyclus and WMG will be sharing this important technology through the research programmes at WMG, working across a range of development areas.

Professor David Greenwood, WMG Director for Industrial Engagement and CEO of the WMG centre High Value Manufacturing Catapult said: 

“Whilst the UK industry has been remarkable in building a world class ecosystem supporting the development of our battery manufacturing capability, we must continue to innovate to capitalise on that success. 

In our September 2020 report, WMG highlighted that by 2040, UK automotive lithium-ion battery cell production alone will require 131,000 tonnes of cathodic metals. With the right infrastructure, recycling can supply 22% of this demand. This represents not only a positive environmental impact, but large savings for manufacturers that build the business case for increased battery recycling capabilities in the UK. 

The Recyclus Group Investment was needed to create suitable recycling facilities in the UK, and their process allows economic recovery of a large percentage of battery material. The process will help protect the environment, secure valuable raw materials, reduce the cost of transport and support the UK with its COP26 commitments. 

Our joint EngD programme will help drive the development of the skills base that will support the circular economy that we will see develop around battery materials as we accelerate the transition towards an electrified future” 

Alex Stanbury, Chief Executive Officer of Technology Minerals, said: “The Recyclus team have been working with WMG for nearly two years now, both sharing our respective expertise as we have been developing our proprietary processes across the five battery chemistries, and learning from WMG’s world-class research programmes. These are critical to achieving a leadership position for the UK, particularly developing proprietary technology for the processing of black mass into the key metals that can go back into the UK battery gigafactories supply chain and therefore significantly reduce the supply-side pressures.

There is a clear demand building as a result of the quantum shift to transport electrification, and that is now extending into key UK sectors, including energy storage, freight and aerospace. Working with WMG we will remain at the forefront of our sector, focused on extracting raw materials required for lithium-ion batteries, whilst solving the ecological issue of spent Li-ion batteries, by recycling them for re-use by battery manufacturers.” 

With the shortage forecast for key battery minerals in the near-immediate future, there is a concern that the road to the rollout of more electric vehicles will be congested. According to the Copper Development Association (CDA), the average copper content of an ICE vehicle is around 23kg, and this will increase to 60kg for plug-in hybrid electric vehicles and to 83kg for pure EVs. Also, full electric buses can use between 224kg to 369kg of copper. According to a report released in February 2021 by the World Bureau of Metals Statistics ((WBMS)), the global copper market had a supply shortage of 1.391 million tons from January to December 2020, up from 383000 tons for the whole of 2019.

 According to an article published in Nature (Future Material Demand for Automotive Lithium-based Batteries, 9 Dec 2020), the increased demand between 2020-2050 for EVs will require a drastic expansion of lithium, cobalt, and nickel supply chains and likely additional resource discovery. The Directors believe that recycling of battery materials could play an important role in reducing the pressures on supply.  

Enquiries 

Technology Minerals Limited

Robin Brundle, Executive Chairman

Alexander Stanbury, Chief Executive Officer

+44 20 7618 9100

 

Alfred Henry Corporate Finance Limited

Nick Michaels

+44 203 772 0021

Arden Partners Plc

Ruari McGirr

+44 207 614 5900

Luther Pendragon

Harry Chathli, Alexis Gore, John Bick

+44 20 7618 9100

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