Ascend Elements Awarded $480M in Grants from U.S. Department of Energy to Manufacture Sustainable Battery Cathode Active Materials 

  • Ascend Elements received two grants from the DOE totaling $480m for the production of sustainable lithium-ion battery cathode materials made from recycled battery feedstock.
  • Grants will support the construction of the planned $1B Apex facility in Hopkinsville, Ky. yielding over $4.4B in positive economic impact for the region.
  • Apex will be the first facility of its kind, utilizing the company’s patented Hydro-to-Cathode™ technology to produce sustainable cathode precursors (pCAM) and cathode active materials (CAM) from spent lithium-ion batteries to support the domestic lithium-ion battery supply chain.

WESTBOROUGH, Mass., (October 19, 2022) – Ascend Elements announced today that it has been awarded grants from the U.S. Department of Energy’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law (BIL) Battery Materials Processing and Battery Manufacturing Initiative. The awards, totaling $480M in matching funds, will support construction of the Ascend Elements ‘Apex’ manufacturing facility in southwest Kentucky, establishing lithium-ion battery supply chain infrastructure that previously did not exist in the United States.

“These awards are transformational for the U.S. lithium-ion battery industry,” said Mike O’Kronley, CEO of Ascend Elements. “The Apex facility, with the Department of Energy’s support, will be the first and largest battery material production facility of its kind in the U.S., improving security of supply of critical materials for the domestic electric vehicle industry as well as the United States’ competitiveness in the lithium-ion battery industry on a global scale. The importance of closed loop lithium-ion battery supply chain cannot be understated. This grant accelerates achievement of that closed-loop supply chain.”

Battery Award Recipients with President Biden | Ascend Elements
President Biden Delivers Remarks on the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law on Wednesday, Oct. 19th 2022 –watch video.

For more details on all the award recipients – click here.

The Apex facility will be a commercial-scale deployment of the company’s Hydro-to-Cathode direct precursor synthesis technology which had been running at pilot scale in Massachusetts for the last few years. This technology enables manufacturing of lithium-ion battery cathode active material and precursors directly from a recycled battery feedstock known as black mass.  Construction at the 140-acre site, located in Hopkinsville Ky., will begin this month. Once completed, Apex will produce enough material annually to power over 250,000 electric vehicles and will generate approximately $4.4B in total economic impact during its construction phase and the first ten years of operation, creating over 400 jobs in the Hopkinsville area. The Apex project will additionally seek to establish community benefits programs including job training and workforce development, affordable childcare, and affordable transportation initiatives.

Based in Westborough, Mass., Ascend Elements is the leading provider of sustainable, closed-loop battery material solutions. From EV battery recycling to commercial-scale production of lithium-ion battery precursor and cathode active materials, Ascend Elements is revolutionizing the production of sustainable lithium-ion battery materials. Its Hydro-to-Cathode™ direct precursor synthesis technology produces new CAM from spent lithium-ion cells more efficiently than traditional methods, resulting in reduced cost, improved performance, and lowered GHG emissions. With fewer batteries going to landfill and a cleaner manufacturing process, Ascend Elements is taking the lithium-ion battery industry to a higher level of sustainability.