Cummins buys into lithium metal battery supplier
By Mike Brezonick30 November 2021
Cummins Inc. has entered into an agreement with Sion Power Corp., a Tucson, Ariz., developer of high-energy rechargeable battery technology, to design and supply battery cells based on their proprietary lithium metal technology for commercial vehicle applications. In connection with the agreement, Cummins said it has acquired a minority stake in Sion Power, which is intended to allow Sion Power to further develop its lithium metal technology for the commercial vehicle market. The size of the Cummins’ share in Sion was not disclosed and no financial details were provided.
Under the agreement, Sion Power will engage in a multi-year development program to design and supply large-format lithium metal battery cells for use in Cummins battery packs. The batteries developed by Cummins will be integrated in its electric powertrains for commercial vehicles.
“Our customers rely on Cummins to provide the most robust electric powertrains in the world,” said Amy Davis, vice president at Cummins and president of the company’s New Power segment. “We need battery technologies that will meet the performance and cost expectations for tough, commercial vehicle duty cycles.”
Cummins said Sion Power’s high-energy battery chemistry is an important component of Cummins’ roadmap to electrify the company’s commercial vehicle products. Based on Sion Power’s proprietary lithium-metal anode technology and incorporating its patented manufacturing process, the cell provides a robust, long-lasting rechargeable battery for Cummins’ demanding applications.
“Sion Power’s Licerion is an enabling technology for Cummins’ future electric commercial vehicle offerings,” said Tracy Kelley, chief executive officer at Sion Power. “Cummins is an ideal partner for Sion Power to enable this next generation of electric mobility and significantly support the decarbonization of the transportation industry. Together this strategic relationship sets us on a path to deliver the future of batteries.”
The Licerion Electric Vehicle cells have been specifically designed for automotive battery applications. The batteries have a capacity of up to 400 Wh/kg and 780 Wh/L, which Sion said enables longer operation. The cells are engineered to provide more than 800 full depth of discharge cycles to 80% capacity and reduced battery weight allows for less energy consumption, the company said.