Ascend Elements are set to produce cathode active materials for Navitas Systems

Federal contractor, Navitas Systems, is purchasing cathode active materials made from recycled lithium-ion batteries for a US Department of Defense project.

Ascend Elements, the vertically integrated lithium-ion battery recycling and engineered-materials company previously known as Battery Resourcers, today announced it has entered into a contract with Navitas Systems, a US leader in comprehensive energy storage solutions and a US Department of Defense (DoD) contractor. They are set to produce cathode active materials for Navitas Systems.

According to the contract, US based Ascend Elements will dellitiver cathode active materials made from recycled batteries and scrap to Navitas Systems in April 2022 for use in a DoD project. This is the first commercial sale of cathode active materials made with Ascend Elements’ patented Hydro-to-Cathode™ technology.

Hydro-to-Cathode process

“We see this as a milestone for the lithium-ion battery industry. With this agreement, Ascend Elements and Navitas will demonstrate how our Hydro-to-Cathode process elevates the value of recycled battery materials, by transforming them into premium cathode active materials to be utilised in manufacturing new lithium batteries. Testing to date indicates the material performs as well as or, in some cases, even better than virgin cathode materials,” explained Michael O’Kronley, CEO and Director of Ascend Elements.

“Our relationship with Navitas Systems will also demonstrate how battery materials suppliers, battery manufacturers, and the US government can collaborate to produce sustainable cathode materials here in the United States, ultimately helping address national security and energy independence concerns, as most critical metals are currently sourced from foreign countries.”

High-performance cathode active materials

“We’re looking forward to assessing how our mission-critical applications for the Department of Defense, including batteries for hybrid vehicles and other military equipment, can be well-served by Ascend Elements,” commented Les Alexander, Vice President, Government Defense and R&D at Navitas Systems. “Their ability to take recycled batteries and create high-performance cathode active materials holds the potential for us to source locally and securely, which is a priority for our customers. We’re pleased to be one of the first to demonstrate a circular lithium-ion battery economy here in the US.”

“The joint effort between Navitas and Ascend Elements is a major first step in solving several problems in the continued growth in usage of lithium-ion batteries,” said Marc Gietter, Chairman of the Military Power Sources Committee of the National Defense Industrial Association (NDIA). “First, it helps demonstrate the potential to minimise the waste stream related to the disposal of these batteries and, second, and probably more important, it is a significant milestone towards ultimately reducing the US military’s reliance on foreign-sourced supply chain components.”

About Navitas Systems

Navitas Systems is a leader in integrated design, technology development, and manufacturing of innovative energy-enabled system solutions and energy storage products for commercial, industrial, and government agency customers. Navitas Systems products range from robust energy storage solutions for motive power and defence-related applications, along with custom lithium cell design and production for specialised military applications. The company is based in Ann Arbor, Mich., with both a 48,000-square-foot R&D, Engineering, and Cell Manufacturing Center, and a 100,000-square-foot Lithium Battery Systems Manufacturing Center.

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