The 2011 Chevrolet Volt’s battery packs will be manufactured in GM’s new automotive battery lab to be built in Michigan. The lithium-ion cells for the battery packs will be supplied by LG Chem.
The automotive battery facility GM is building will be the largest of its kind at over 31,000 sq. ft. With the new facility GM will be able to design new energy storage technologies as well as testing and developing new lithium-ion technologies. The lab will be built to allow GM ramp-up in-house battery capability.
“The design, development, and production of advanced batteries must be a core competency for GM, and we’ve been rapidly building our capacity and resources to support this direction,” GM CEO Rick Wagoner said.
In addition to building the battery production and research facility, GM has teamed up with several companies, the government and a school to further enrich its battery technology. The corporate collaborations include LG Chem, A123Systems, Hitachi Ltd., Compact Power, and Cobasys.
GM will add several hundred engineers to its global hybrid, electric-vehicle, and advanced battery staff to do research at the new facility. In addition, GM plans to work with the University of Michigan to create an automotive advanced battery lab in Ann Arbor, Michigan. GM will also work with the University of Michigan to develop a curriculum for battery engineers.