San Jose-based 3D-printing startup Sakuu (formerly KeraCel) may have found a way to make solid-state batteries practical in microelectronics and electric vehicles (EVs).
Solid-state batteries are fire-safe, freeze-resistant, have a higher energy density, and have other characteristics that make them better than lithium-ion batteries.
Sakuu’s Swift Print battery technology promises to produce batteries in bespoke forms that may not resemble pouch, prismatic, or cylindrical cells for better application.
Reports claim that Sakuu’s invention is both a 3D printing and battery chemistry breakthrough. The company’s solid-state battery is like a layer cake with very thin layers, hence 3D printing is essential.
Normally, solid-state batteries are hard to handle and difficult to connect without a liquid. This issue is solved by 3D printing each layer directly on the one below.
The Sakuu Kavian process converts basic materials into batteries with minimal equipment. Sakuu believes its strategy can reduce factory footprint by 44%, capital expenditure by 23%, operations by 69%, and manufacturing cost by 33% compared to today’s roll-to-roll battery manufacturing process.
Including all deposition and inspection phases, a single 30-foot-long machine can manufacture 40 MWh per year of batteries, enough for 500 EVs.
Sakuu’s San Jose factory has started limited manufacturing of cells for testing and will ship them to undisclosed clients in the automotive, mobility, aerospace, IoT devices, and medical sectors. If successful, Sakuu’s architecture can revolutionize the EV industry.