The Kentucky Economic Finance Authority has approved up to $3.5 million to help fund development of the Kentucky-Argonne Battery Manufacturing Research and Development Center in Lexington.
The funds will be matched with up to $3.5 million in federal funds.
Initial plans for a national battery manufacturing research and development center in Kentucky supported by a partnership between the Commonwealth of Kentucky, the University of Kentucky, the University of Louisville and the U.S. Department of Energy’s Argonne National Laboratory was announced last April.
Argonne National Laboratory, near Chicago, is a multi-disciplinary federal research facility with more than 1,000 scientists and engineers and an annual operating budget of over $600 million. The lab serves as the nation’s lead research facility for transportation-related R&D, including basic and applied research on advanced materials and diagnostics for electrodes and cells, modeling battery life expectancy and electrochemical cell design and performance, and testing cell and battery systems.
The Kentucky facility will be managed by Argonne and will aid nationwide efforts to develop and deploy a domestic supply of advanced battery technologies for vehicle applications to assist in securing U.S. energy independence, reduce greenhouse gas emissions and help in strengthening the economy. The two Kentucky universities have agreed to contribute lab space, donor funds, R&D grant funds and researchers.
The center’s major goals are to support the development of advanced lithium-ion batteries; facilitate collaborations between federal labs, universities, manufacturers, suppliers and end-users; develop advanced manufacturing technologies to reduce battery production costs; and accelerate the commercialization of technologies developed at national laboratories and universities.
The approved funds will be used to purchase specialized equipment and make necessary facility improvements for manufacturing and testing lithium-ion batteries, asymmetric capacitors and other advanced electrochemical energy storage systems.