Factorial, LG Chem sign MOU for solid-state battery development

Two next-generation battery material and cell manufacturers are cooperating to expedite solid-state battery development. LG Chem and Factorial Energy have signed a Memorandum of Understanding, hoping to eventually lead the solid-state battery segment with a strategic partnership.

Factorial Energy is a Massachusetts-based solid-state battery developer that has been developing energy-dense solid-state technology for EV propulsion applications. This includes its flagship product, the 100 Amp-hour (Ah) Factorial Electrolyte System Technology (FEST) solid-state cell.

This proprietary battery technology is compatible with existing lithium-ion battery manufacturing equipment, enabling automakers to transition to the advanced cells more seamlessly.

Those solid-state cells have been UN-certified, and A-sample battery cells have been sent to OEM partners. All while Factorial continues cell production at a brand-new facility in its home state. Meanwhile, LG Chem has invested billions in battery material development, particularly those required in cathodes, including solid-state cells, while setting up its own US facilities following a long-term supply contract signed with General Motors.

Now, LG Chem and Factorial are combining their respective expertise in battery materials and manufacturing practices to speed up solid-state battery development and implementation.

The 100 Ah Factorial Electrolyte System Technology (FEST) solid-state battery cell / Credit: Factorial Energy

LG Chem and Factorial to combine solid-state know-how

To accelerate the development of solid-state batteries, LG Chem and Factorial Energy say they will collaborate, pairing the former’s battery material capabilities with the latter’s next-generation battery material and process innovations. Per Factorial CEO Siyu Huang:

We are thrilled to enter into this collaboration with LG Chem, one of the pre-eminent global leaders in battery materials. The electric vehicle industry is at the cusp of a much-needed breakthrough in battery technology, and we believe that close supply chain partnerships will help accelerate this transition. Together with LG Chem, we’re advancing the development of critical solid-state battery technology that will unlock the electric vehicle future.

Following the initial solid-state development project, LG Chem and Factorial stated they would explore technology licensing and material supply as part of an expanded strategic partnership with hopes of taking the market. LG Chem CTO Jong-ku Lee also spoke to the signed MOU:

Through this collaboration, we will become technology leaders in the field of next-generation batteries. We expect to secure solid-state materials through Factorial’s accumulated experience in next-generation batteries and LG Chem’s superior material technology.

Details of the new partnership remain light at this point, but this has the makings of a lucrative partnership, as Factorial can benefit from LG Chem’s cathode and other battery material expertise. At the same time, LG Chem can successfully supply essential materials to Factorial’s FEST solid-state cells, especially as they develop toward scaled production.

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