Leydenjar has secured funding to scale up the production of silicon anode foil, used to increase the energy density of lithium-ion batteries. The company will invest 60 million euros in the construction of its first production facility, called Plant One, which is expected to land in Noord-Brabant. If all goes to plan, it will be operational in 2026.
Founded in 2016, Leydenjar has developed a lithium-ion battery anode made entirely from silicon. This metalloid is an excellent host for lithium ions but in bulk form has the propensity to crack under the constant stress of taking in and letting go of its guest. Leydenjar adopted a plasma-enhanced chemical vapor deposition (PECVD) process originally developed for thin-film solar cells to manufacture nanotextured silicon that can accommodate the volume changes associated with lithium loading and unloading.
The startup claims its silicon anodes can pack up to 70 percent more energy in batteries, compared to batteries using common graphite. Having previously demonstrated the technology on a pilot plant scale, Leydenjar will now develop and install a set of larger machines for the production of the anode material at an industrial scale.
The scale-up operation is co-financed with a 30-million-euro investment by the European Investment Bank, backed by a guarantee of the European Commission. The other half of the financing comes from Leydenjar’s client projects, earlier committed grants and a previously closed series A investment round in 2021.