A start-up in North Carolina has received an $11 million boost from companies including General Motors to provide batteries for electric vehicles.

Soelect, which was formed in 2020, has announced it has received investment from General Motors, KTB Network, and Lotte Ventures to create fast-charging lithium-metal batteries for future electric vehicles.

The company, based in Greensboro, was formed in 2020 by Jin Cho, a 25-year battery veteran who had worked for LG, Samsung, and Johnson Controls (JCI.N).

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Cho said Soelect has more than 20 customers, mainly in the automotive industry.

GM’s investment in Soelect complements its initial investment in and strategic cooperation with Massachusetts battery start-up SES, which is poised to go public later this year.

It is also set to invest a massive $7 billion to create 4,000 new jobs in Michigan.

GM and SES, a 10-year-old MIT spinoff, have been working together on lithium-metal batteries since 2015.

Electric vehicle batteries using lithium-metal anodes have the potential to store more energy, allowing for a longer range between charges. This includes charging considerably faster than existing lithium-ion batteries, which commonly utilize graphite or silicon-rich anodes.

GM’s investment in Soelect “complements” the automaker’s cooperation with SES, according to spokesman Darryll Harrison, and further enhances our efforts to expedite the evolution of battery chemistries.”

Harrison said Soelect’s lithium-metal technology “could assist as an enabler for both upcoming lithium-metal and solid-state EV battery anode designs.”

Source: Reuters

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