Mumbai-based Gegadyne Energy has announced that it has received Rs 33.4 crore Series A funding from South Indian company V-Guard.
Gegadyne is developing an alternative to Lithium-Ion batteries
Gegadyne claims similar power densities, and lower costs than Lithium-ion
The company will use this funding to set up larger infrastructure
Who is Gegadyne?
Gegadyne Energy is a Mumbai based start-up that has been researching alternate power storage solutions to the established, but flawed Lithium-ion battery technology. The company already holds multiple patents and won the Energy Startup of the Year Award at the 9th Annual Entrepreneur Awards 2019. Gegadyne Energy was founded in 2015 by Jubin Varghese and Ameya Gadiwan.
What is Gegadyne’s technology?
In 2019, we visited the Mumbai-based Gegadyne facility to meet the people behind the company and get acquainted with the technology they were developing. At the time we were given to understand that the company was developing supercapacitor technology, but Gegadyne now tells us that it is working on a multi-ion battery technology and that this technology offers similar fast charging capabilities to supercapacitors.
Essentially, Gegadyne’s battery works on a similar concept of ion transfer as in Lithium-ion batteries, but without using Lithium. Instead, Gegadyne says that it has developed multiple proprietary materials that enable this ion transfer, while also offering much faster charging times, lower heat generation and a longer life.
What are Gegadyne’s claimed advantages?
Gegadyne claims that their battery pack uses no Lithium or Cobalt and there are multiple advantages to this. First, the mining and extraction process is expensive as well as not very eco-friendly. Environmentally friendly discarding is also a major issue with these materials once the battery has completed its life. Mainly, though, these commodities are primarily sourced from China who controls a majority of the world’s supply.
Gegadyne says its technology is mainly based on carbon, which is much more easily available locally and also more environment friendly. However, there are other claimed advantages as well. The company says that its product will be priced between Lead Acid and Lithium-ion and that it should be around 30 percent more affordable than a comparative Lithium-ion battery pack.
Founder, Jubin Varghese, tells us that their battery pack will have an energy density of around 200 Wh/kg, which is on the higher side compared to Lithium-ion battery packs currently available on most in EVs in India. Best of all is Gegadyne’s claim that its battery pack can charge from empty to 100 percent in just 15 minutes using a 4C DC fast charger. With a conventional AC wall outlet, Gegadyne claims their battery will take approximately 2 hours to charge vs 4 hours with a similarly sized Lithium-ion battery.
When will Gegadyne batteries reach the market?
It will still be some time before a Gegadyne battery will be in a commercially available EV. The fact that the company has been invested in by V-Guard also reveals that they are looking at the power storage sector just as intently as the EV business.
Kerala based V-Guard built its name through its voltage stabilisers, but the company also has a big presence on the power storage space as well as with consumer and agricultural products. The telecom sector is another area of interest to Gegadyne because the towers for 5G technology will require their own power storage solutions.
Gegadyne says it is in talks with numerous OEMS, and we could see their batteries in some two-wheeler EVs as well as power storage devices in a couple of years. However, there is still much work to do in terms of expansion and making the technology production ready. This is where the V-Guard investment will be used, with Gegadyne looking to ramp up its infrastructure by next fiscal year, including new labs and larger capacity. The company also aims to expand its highly skilled personnel from the current 10 employees to around 50-60 by the next fiscal year.