Li-ion battery manufacturing cluster coming up at Gujarat’s Dholera, Tata first to invest

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Tata Chemicals—part of the over US$ 100 billion Tata Group—has committed an investment of Rs 4,000 crore to set up a 10 GW lithium-ion battery plant in Dholera Special Investment Region (DSIR) of Gujarat.

Speaking about the investment, Jai Prakash Shivahare, managing director, Dholera Industrial City Development Limited (DICDL) told pv magazine: “The company [Tata Chemicals] will set up 1.7 GW capacity in the first phase at an investment of Rs 750-1000 crore and then scale it to 10 GW as demand rises.”

“As the government is coming up with new incentives, they [Tata Chemicals] may scale up the capacity very quickly,” the IAS officer added.

Notably, known for the ambitious solar park, the Dholera SIR is also going to host Li-ion batteries manufacturing cluster.

“We are developing Li-ion battery manufacturing cluster in Dholera SIR,” Shivahare confirmed to pv magazine while adding that Tata Chemicals has already been allotted 126 acres land in DSIR to set up Li-ion battery manufacturing business.

“The government of India is targeting 50 GW lithium manufacturing capacity in next few years. We will try to get maximum number of players to Dholera so that they can get the benefit of large cluster,” he added.

Highlighting rational power tariff, encumbrance-free land and trunk infrastructure as the key advantages at DSIR, Shivahare said: “Our power tariff is already the lowest in the country and as battery manufacturing is power intensive, it makes a lot of sense for Li-ion battery manufacturers to be in Dholera SIR. We also offer plug-and-play infrastructure and land is available for immediate allotment.”

Tata Chemicals’ lithium strategy

Tata Chemicals aims to become a leader in energy chemistry in India with focus on Li-ion cells manufacturing, cathode actives and recycling. For the purpose, it has signed memorandums of understanding with Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO), Central Electrochemical Research Institute under Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) and Centre for Materials for Electronics Technology (C-MET).

While ISRO would provide lithium-ion cell technology, CSIR CECRI will help Tata Chemicals with the technology for scaling up of manufacturing cathode materials for lithium-ion cells. C-MET will help develop technology for the recovery and purification of cathode and anode active ingredients from spent lithium-ion cells/batteries.