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Austin-based EnergyX brings in $20 million for tech development

Source: 
Austin American-Statesman

Austin-based renewable energy company EnergyX has received commitments of $20 million in financing for technology development, the company said.

EnergyX is developing sustainable lithium extraction methods and solid-state battery energy storage systems for the electric vehicle and personal electronics industries.

Lithium is a metallic component key to electric batteries and is expected to play a major role in the global transition to sustainable energy. As the lightest metal on the periodic table, lithium's inherent properties make it an efficient, high-capacity storage method for renewable energy systems.

Rising global demand for electric vehicles and economic energy storage systems has led to projections of a huge increase in demand for lithium. In 2020, global supply was roughly 315,000 tons and is expected to increase to 5.5 million tons by 2040, according to industry estimates.

EnergyX's partners and investors include Obsidian Acquisition Partners, Helios Capital and the University of Texas, a combination it said is intended to bring together industry, academia and natural resource management.

“Some in the electric vehicle industry have likened lithium mining to the early days of oil exploration," said Kris Haber, director of Obsidian. "EnergyX has developed a technology for lithium extraction whose potential economic impact on the industry, is similar to ‘fracking’ in terms of efficiency and cost saving, yet limiting environmental impact and global carbon footprint.”

EnergyX says it has identified ways to improve lithium extraction methods while reducing the environmental mining impact.

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Last year, EnergyX announced a partnership with Orocobre Ltd., a mineral resource company based in Brisbane, Australia, to produce technology to enable cleaner, more efficient lithium extraction.

In April, Orocobre announced a $4 billion merger with Galaxy Resources to create the third largest lithium producer in the world. EnergyX said it plans to deploy its pilots with Orocobre in the near future.

“EnergyX has been diligently working towards creating a cleaner lithium space in conjunction with other global leaders. We are all very excited to continue that focus with the additional support through this Series A funding,” said Teague Egan, EnergyX CEO. “There is a major oncoming shift across the entire battery material supply chain including mining and materials, anode/cathode, and cell assembly, and EnergyX plans to be at the epicenter for decades to come.”

This article originally appeared on Austin American-Statesman: Austin-based EnergyX brings in $20 million for tech development

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