Ionic Materials expands lab operations, testing capabilities with opening of 30,000-square-foot space

WOBURN, Mass.—Ionic Materials recently announced the opening of a new lab facility in Woburn, Massachusetts, to advance the development and commercialization of its next-generation solid-state battery technology. The 30,000-square-foot lab will support the company’s internal growth, as it plans to double its employee count in 2018, and is expected to fuel manufacturing for Ionic Materials’ solid polymer electrolyte.

The lab facility is fully operational, with new capabilities for polymer processing, thermal processing, and extrusion. It also includes facilities for dry room assembly, battery testing, and development labs.

“Over the past year, we’ve significantly advanced our solid polymer electrolyte’s capabilities— including chemistry performance—and partnered with several world-class companies to help bring our technology to commercialization,” said Mike Zimmerman, founder and CEO of Ionic Materials, in a prepared release. “The new and expanded laboratory enables us to stay true to our commitment in ensuring our polymer supports the next-generation of solid-state batteries. As part of this, the facility gives us the space needed to tap into and hire top talent in the area, and we’re planning to recruit heavily over the next few years.”

After coming out of stealth mode last year, Ionic Materials closed $65 million of venture funding in February 2018. The materials technology company has formed a number of strategic partnerships within the battery manufacturing, consumer electronics, and electric vehicle ecosystem, including partnerships with A123 Systems, Hitachi, the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi alliance, Total S.A., and Volta Energy Technologies.

Ionic Materials said in the release that its solid plastic polymer material enables solid-state batteries that are inherently safe, affordable, high in energy density, and operational at room temperature. The special properties of Ionic Materials’ polymer electrolyte are reported to allow the use of high-energy materials and support lithium-ion cells with little to no cobalt in their cathodes. The company also said that further advancements made possible by its polymer will support additional high-energy and eco-friendly battery chemistries, including lithium metal, lithium sulfur, and inexpensive and low-cost rechargeable alkaline batteries.

Ionic Materials also announced that Jan van Dokkum has joined the company as chairman of the board of directors along with Bill Joy, who serves as a board member.

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