Gelion launches Australian battery manufacturing facility

Sep 30, 2022

Completed ahead of schedule, Gelion's manufacturing line was officially launchd by the Hon Chris Bowen MP & the Hon Ed Husic MP.

Global renewable energy storage innovator Gelion (AIM:GELN) has commenced industrial production of its gel-based zinc bromide battery, with the launch of a manufacturing facility in Western Sydney capable of producing 2 megawatt hours of batteries annually.

Gelion’s non-lithium battery lasts for 6 to 12 hours, and will be critical in replacing fossil fuel-produced energy on the grid by providing new storage options for a higher percentage of renewables. In the future, Gelion could scale its facilities to gigafactory level and create thousands of direct and indirect jobs.

Gelion partnered with Battery Energy at their lead-acid manufacturing site in Fairfield to accelerate speed to market, with the battery designed to fit standard lead acid racks, and its manufacturing line utilising 70 percent of existing lead-acid battery processes.

Scaling the Gelion manufacturing capacity will also require many similar skills as those used in other legacy industrial processes, including coal fire power stations, meaning Gelion could absorb, retrain, and grow thousands of fossil fuel-reliant or otherwise diminishing jobs as Australia’s energy transition occurs.

This marriage between established and new technology shows Australia could scale sovereign domestic manufacturing capacity extremely efficiently by leveraging existing processes and supply chains, according to Gelion.

The global battery market is expected to reach $265 Billion by 2026 but there are currently significant challenges with unsustainable, unreliable, or risky global supply chains, including a dependence on finite rare-earth materials and a predicted global lithium shortage.

Gelion’s gel-based zinc bromide battery solves for these issues by being more cost effective, unreliant on rare earths, sustainably produced, recyclable, safe in high temperatures, providing long duration storage with lower maintenance costs, and being scalable on a predominantly Australian supply chain.

Tests performed on the first batch of Gelion batteries have shown their performance meets customer requirements, and the batteries will be supplied to the Acciona Energia solar plant in Narrava, Spain to potentially become part of Acciona’s supplier portfolio as a renewable energy storage provider.

The Acciona Energia deal is just one of many in Gelion’s pipeline – Gelion is in advanced discussions with multiple global customers in the energy, resources, mining, and oil & gas sectors for trials and offtakes. Gelion and Battery Energy are also experiencing significant interest from Australian customers and industry looking to decarbonise and improve energy security.

According to Gelion, this ability to create scalable onshore production facilities that can assist Australia’s energy transition, and which produce sophisticated exportable products from Australian technology and industrial know-how, is absolutely critical to securing Australia’s sovereign manufacturing capabilities.

Hannah McCaughey, CEO of Gelion, said: “We are delighted to be launching production of our breakthrough battery, proving it can be produced at scale with existing lead-acid battery manufacturing processes. Our game-changing technology will now be deployed to Acciona to support its development of renewable battery systems. This milestone is a significant step forward in Gelion’s growth strategy and also strengthens our position in the rapidly expanding energy storage market.”

The new Western Sydney facility officially launched on 30 September 2022 at a ceremony attended by Chris Bowen, Federal Minister for Climate Change and Energy, and Ed Husic, Federal Minister for Industry and Science. Minister Husic will play a key role in implementing Australia’s first National Battery Strategy.

According to Hon Chris Bowen MP: “This is a great day for Gelion, starting the first industrial production line for their new Endure Battery, right here in Fairfield, the industrial heartland of Sydney. This is what Australian innovation is all about; cutting-edge technology and new manufacturing opportunities, which means more well-paying local jobs and upskilling in the workforce.”

According to Hon Ed Husic MP:It’s fantastic to see Australian scientific know-how turned into battery manufacturing capability right here in Western Sydney. Through the National Battery Strategy, the Albanese Government wants to see the creation of a thriving energy storage industry supporting renewable technologies.”

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