A former cigarette factory in Concord, NC was set to reopen this week as a 325,160-square-metre (3.5 million-square-foot) battery factory, producing lithium-iron-phosphate storage units for solar and wind farms that can be charged in half an hour, Climate Progress reports.
The $1-billion facility has already booked 200 MW in orders, Jeff St. John reports on Greentech Grid, positioning Swiss startup Alevo as “a serious rival to Tesla in the race to achieve next-generation grid battery manufacturing at gigawatt scale.”
The project “comes during an economic shift for the tobacco industry,” Williams writes. “Cigarette companies’ profits are down as much as 30%, as fewer Americans smoke.”
Meanwhile, “the country’s electricity grid is becoming obsolete,” and “the utility battery industry is poised to expand more than 10-fold, increasing its revenue from $164 million in 2014 to upwards of $2.5 billion by 2023.”