Denso commits $1bn to expanding US footprint
Japan’s Denso, one of the world’s largest suppliers of automotive suppliers, largely specialising in technological components, is set to invest $1bn in to Maryville, Tennessee with the aim of expanding its presence in North America.
The commitment will create 1,000 jobs in the region as well as greatly boosting the role of the US in the innovation of vehicle safety and new vehicle models.
- Siemens and Chromalloy to offer 350 new manufacturing jobs in joint venture
"This is an investment in the future of DENSO, and also the future of transportation,” said Kenichiro Ito, Chairman and CEO of Denso’s North American operations. “We are seeing dramatic shifts in the role of transportation in society, and this investment will help position us to meet those changing demands.”
In demand roles will include support and production jobs such as engineers and technicians. This will enable the company to expand its production lines, raising the potential to build a greater quantity and quality of safety and connectivity components, amongst others, for hybrid and electric vehicles.
Denso’s $1bn commitment is a further addition to the company’s $400mn investment back in 2015 where the company added 500 jobs whilst consolidating their regional operations, having also invested $75.5mn in its Southfield, Michigan headquarters in Dublin, Ohio facilities more recently.
Ultium Cells LLC/Li-Cycle: Sustainable Battery Manufacturing
Ultium Cells LLC - a joint venture between General Motors and LG Energy Solutions - has announced its latest collaboration with Li-Cycle. Joining forces the two have set ambitions to expand recycling in North America, recycling up to 100% of the scrap materials in battery cell manufacturing
What is Ultium Cells LLC?
Announcing their partnership in December 2019, General Motors (GM) and LG Energy Solutions established Ultium Cells LLC with a mission to “ensure excellence of Battery Cell Manufacturing through implementation of best practices from each company to contribute [to the] expansion of a Zero Emission propulsion on a global scale.”
Who is Li-Cycle?
Founded in 2016, Li-Cycle leverages innovative solutions to address emerging and urgent challenges around the world.
As the use of Lithium-ion rechargeable batteries in automotive, industrial energy storage, and consumer electronic applications rises, Li-Cycle believes that “the world needs improved technology and supply chain innovations to better recycle these batteries, while also meeting the rapidly growing demand for critical and scarce battery-grade materials.”
Why are Ultium Cells LLC and Li-Cycle join forces?
By joining forces to expand the recycling of scrap materials in battery cell manufacturing in North America, the new recycling process will allow Ultium Cells LLC to recycle cobalt, nickel, lithium, graphite, copper, manganese and aluminum.
“95% of these materials can be used in the production of new batteries or for adjacent industries,” says GM, who explains that the new hydrometallurgical process emits 30% less greenhouse gases (GHGs) than traditional processes, minimising the environmental impact. Use of this process will begin later in the year (2021).
"Our combined efforts with Ultium Cells will be instrumental in redirecting battery manufacturing scrap from landfills and returning a substantial amount of valuable battery-grade materials back into the battery supply chain. This partnership is a critical step forward in advancing our proven lithium-ion resource recovery technology as a more sustainable alternative to mining, " said Ajay Kochhar, President, CEO and co-founder of Li-Cycle.
"GM's zero-waste initiative aims to divert more than 90% of its manufacturing waste from landfills and incineration globally by 2025. Now, we're going to work closely with Ultium Cells and Li-Cycle to help the industry get even better use out of the materials,” added Ken Morris, Vice President of Electric and Autonomous Vehicles, GM.
Since 2013, GM has recycled or reused 100% of the battery packs it has received from customers, with most current GM EVs repaired with refurbished packs.
"We strive to make more with less waste and energy expended. This is a crucial step in improving the sustainability of our components and manufacturing processes,” concluded Thomas Gallagher, Chief Operating Officer, Ultium Cells LLC.