RACE Energy, a deep-tech electric vehicle (EV) infrastructure company for battery swapping, announced a strategic partnership with LOHUM, India’s largest producer of sustainable energy transition materials via recycling, repurposing, and refining, to tackle EV battery waste and identify second life use applications. Aligning with the mandate under EPR (Extended Producer Responsibility) guidelines for responsible battery management, this partnership ensures that more than 90% of raw materials from RACE’s used batteries will be recycled/refurbished.
In June 2023, RACE Energy inaugurated its battery manufacturing facility – equipped with a 50 MWh production plant with a capacity to deploy 30,000 batteries annually. RACE’s proactive approach to sustainability extends the battery life by around 40% by equipping the battery and swap station with unique charging algorithms and internal cooling systems. With RACE actively scaling up its battery swapping operations, this collaboration with LOHUM is a significant step towards responsible battery disposal.
LOHUM made history by using NEETM™ multi-stage hydrometallurgical energy transition material recycling technology to produce Pure Metallic Lithium, in September 2023 becoming the first non-Chinese company to do so through recycling. The development holds significant implications for closed-loop battery materials, extending RACE’s EV batteries’ usefulness and value in secondary raw material and second-life ecosystems.
Gautham Maheswaran, Co-Founder, RACE Energy says, “We have always worked towards ensuring the optimal use of our batteries at RACE. With our in-house software, we incentivise drivers and encourage them to efficiently use their batteries for shorter ranges, enabling them to be utilised to a much lower State of Health (SOH) level. This partnership with LOHUM enables us to further extend the life of swappable battery modules, which will be seamlessly transitioned into useful second-life applications. The raw materials extracted from the batteries will feed into Lithium-ion cell manufacturing, thus creating a circular economy for EV batteries in India.”
Speaking on the partnership Chetan Jain, Senior VP – Business, LOHUM, expresses “We at LOHUM applaud the contributions of RACE Energy to boost the sustainability of EV batteries and viability of EV infrastructure. RACE’s innovations resonate with LOHUM’s mission of accelerating the clean energy transition by building a parallel supply of secondary raw materials and making battery materials last forever. This partnership with RACE enables us to further expand the supply of clean energy transition materials needed for the manufacturing of new batteries via recycling while easing the demand for mined primary raw materials that need to be imported to power India’s expeditiously growing EV ecosystem, via repurposing.”
Since its inception in 2019, RACE Energy has been a pioneer in addressing key challenges within the EV industry. Their innovative battery-swapping technology has effectively tackled issues such as high vehicle costs, long charging times, and range anxiety. RACE’s batteries will now be earmarked for second-life applications such as renewable energy storage and power backup or will be repurposed for smaller EVs. LOHUM’s role involves procuring these batteries from RACE, subjecting them to rigorous testing, and exploring potential alternative uses, thus promoting a circular economy. As the Lithium-ion battery recycling market is projected to reach USD 14 billion by 2030, this partnership with LOHUM underscores its commitment to an environmentally conscious future.