Battery material maker expands production in New Carlisle
A Texas-based specialty materials manufacturer is growing operations in northern Indiana. Alkegen has begun commercial production of its silicon battery anode material in New Carlisle and plans to add 75 jobs as a result.
The company is not disclosing its financial investment in the expansion.
The new production line manufactures silicon fiber anode material, or SiFAB. The material, the company said, is used to strengthen the overall structure of a battery in order to alleviate the mechanical stresses caused by multiple charge and discharge cycles.
“Our latest investment in new manufacturing capacity for SiFAB is enabling Alkegen to meet growing demand from customers across a wide range of industries, including electric vehicles, renewable energy storage, and consumer electronics,” Alkegen CEO John Dandolph said in written remarks.
Chief Innovation Officer Chad Cannan said the SiFAB material is currently being validated by the company’s customers for use in more than 20 applications.
The New Carlisle facility is Alkegen’s only Indiana location and employs nearly 130 people. A spokesperson for the company told IIB there is potential for further expansion in Indiana.
“Alkegen is committed to expanding its domestic production and growth in Indiana to meet the growing demand for next generation lithium-ion batteries,” the spokesperson said.
The company has 75 manufacturing facilities in 12 countries and employs more than 9,000 people.
New Carlisle has been in the EV battery spotlight in Indiana in recent months.
A joint venture between General Motors Co. (NYSE: GM) and Korea-based LG Energy Solution had been eyeing the St. Joseph County town for a possible $2.4 billion electric vehicle batter manufacturing plant.
County officials last year approved an incentive package and economic development agreement for the project, if New Carlisle was selected. However, plans for the project were put on hold due to the partners failing to come to an agreement on building the plant.
South Bend Regional Chamber of Commerce CEO Jeff Rea told IIB that local officials remain confident the project will continue in New Carlisle with GM and a possible new partner.