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Elkem spins out Vianode

Norwegian company Elkem has commissioned its pilot-scale battery materials plant at Kristiansand and begun qualification processes with several battery cell producers. It has already formed a memorandum of understanding for the supply of battery materials with Freyr.

As part of what it called “the next step towards large-scale production”, Elkem has also established a wholly owned subsidiary called Vianode that will combine all of its existing activities in advanced battery materials for the growing electric vehicle market. Subject to a final investment decision later this year, it expects to build a full-scale plant at the Herøya Industrial Park.

Vianode has already received €1 million from Enova, a Norwegian government body, to fund the initial planning of the potential large-scale plant in Norway and further applications will made over the coming months. It had previously received grants from Innovation Norway related to the pilot plant, and is on the shortlist for support from the EU’s Innovation Fund.

In addition, Vianode is continuing with advanced research on silicon-graphite composite materials for improved battery performance and participating in the EU Horizon programme-funded Hydra and 3beLiEVe research projects on next generation lithium-ion batteries. It is also investing in R&D on the recycling of battery-grade graphite, supported by the Norwegian Research Council.

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