Calix launches reactor at battery manufacturing facility

The federal government has provided in $800,000 in funding for Calix’s advanced lithium battery manufacturing facility in regional Victoria.

Federal Minister for Industry, Science and Technology Karen Andrews said the BATMn reactor at the Calix Manufacturing Facility would open the door to a new frontier of advanced manufacturing and battery creation.

“Australia is well positioned to become a world leader in the booming lithium industry, which has huge potential to create new jobs and opportunities for Australians,” Andrews said.

“As the world’s largest producer of lithium, we have an enormous opportunity to leverage off this rapidly-growing industry. That’s why the Morrison Government supported the creation of the BATMn reactor with $800,000 through the Advanced Manufacturing Growth Fund.

“Calix is a fantastic example of an advanced manufacturer using Australia’s abundant lithium reserves to create high-value products for domestic and international markets.”

Senator David Van welcomed the opening of the reactor and the opportunities it will bring to regional Victoria.

“Calix’s BATMn reactor is evidence of Australia’s bright future in advanced manufacturing,” Senator Van said.

“The Government’s investment into these projects shows our commitment to growing the battery industry, which drives job creation and economic growth.”

The reactor will fuel the work of the Cooperative Research Centre Project (CRC-P) for Advanced Hybrid Batteries, which recently received $3 million through round 7 of the CRC-P Program.

Calix leads the CRC-P in collaboration with the Institute for Frontier Materials and BAT-TRI Hub at Deakin University and specialist chemicals manufacturer Boron Molecular Ltd Pty.

The CRC-P project aims to create a sustainable Australian manufacturing industry delivering high performance, affordable, and more recyclable lithium ion hybrid batteries.

Calix CEO Phil Hodgson said that the rapid growth in electric vehicles and renewable energy was creating a global need for more efficient, cheaper, higher-capacity and more sustainable energy storage options.

“While a large part of this growth has been enabled through the performance of lithium-ion batteries, the issues around the cost, capacity, safety and sustainability of current lithium-ion batteries will increasingly limit this growth,” Hodgson said.

“There is a need for advanced materials for lithium-ion batteries that deliver superior performance and safety at lower cost while at the same time reducing environmental impact. With BATMn, and our expanded network of research institutes and major industrial players, this exactly what Calix is trying to achieve.”