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Epsilon Advanced Materials has set up India's first lithium-ion battery manufacturing plant. The plant was set up in August last year and is currently sourcing raw material from the largest steel mill in the country.
According to the recent report from Bloomberg, Epsilon Advanced Materials has been set up by Vikram Handa, the son-in-law of India's biggest steel tycoon Sajjan Jindal. Mr Handa plans to invest 60 billion rupees to produce over 1 lakh tonnes of synthetic graphite anode by 2030. This accounts for 10 per cent of the global demand for battery manufacturing.
Anode materials are the negative electrode in lithium-ion batteries and account for a quarter of a cell's components. Vikram aims to challenge the Chinese industries that currently produces more than 80% of the world's supply of these anodes.
They import raw materials from India to manufacture these battery components. However, many industrialists including Vikram looks to change Indian from a battery raw material provide to battery components provider soon.
Vikram Handa, said, "I'm quite optimistic on the outlook for India's battery space over the next decade. It's going to take another two to three years for really serious money to go into this space but after, you'll see a lot of money pouring into it. India is such a big auto market that one cannot ignore it."
JSW Steel, Epsilon's parent company processes the coal tar, which is further converted to thin black pellets or liquid. The converted material can be used in manufacturing a variety of products such as tyres, fuels and paints.
However, to manufacture battery components such as anode, the company needs to further process the coal tar. To achieve this, Epsilon has secured a patent for a furnace design. The company also aims to file three more patents for the same, which will enable battery manufacturing. Currently, it's exporting precursor anode material to China, Japan and Europe.
With battery components being manufactured, Mr Handa also aims to attract manufacturers from China. Additionally, Indian Transport Minister, Nitin Gadkari has also announced that a new battery policy will be announced in the country soon.
Apart from the above-mentioned plans for battery manufacturing, many start-ups and mainstream automakers are producing electric vehicles in India. All of them currently import battery components in the country. However, the upcoming project of locally manufacturing battery components will help solve this major issue.
Thoughts About India's First Battery Manufacturing Plant To Be Setup In Karnataka
With the local prodcution of the battery components, EV makers can now achieve 100 per cent localization. This will help them to price their products aggressively and within reach of most EV buyers in the country. This leads to faster adoption of electric vehicle in the country and reduces air pollution from gasoline-powered vehicles.