Startup EVA Energie takes off

Rimouski’s young company has just perfected a technology that allows the reuse of certain parts of lithium-ion batteries, normally destined for scrap, which allows the creation of new batteries from old batteries.

Batteries, which power electric vehicles and tools, are made up of several cells that look like batteries. The EVA team has conducted multiple analyzes and multiple tests on these batteries over the past few months to find that nearly 50% of the cells are still in excellent condition.

“30% of these cells are more than 80% of their original capacity, which is huge,” reports EVA president and co-founder Igor Simonnet.

“What you need to know is that each cell reacts slightly differently and the perfect pack would be one where the cells degrade absolutely identically, which doesn’t exist. There will always be cells that degrade a little faster and packages can also have technical issues etc. which brings the cells to the ecocentres more quickly. On the other hand, they still contain a lot of energy. »

create new farms

As a result, these cells can be used again to make new batteries.

“The current context of shortages and the very sharp increase in the cost of materials used to manufacture lithium-ion batteries is leading to a huge price increase. Battery assemblers are looking for competitively priced cells. EVA will be able to respond to this new market”, explains Mr. Simonnet, who believes that crises can be unique opportunities, as long as you know how to react quickly.

The green mini factory

The laboratories where EVA technology is developed are located in Rimouski. However, the company wants to innovate even further, with its concept of a green, autonomous energy mini-factory.

Modular and composed of recycled containers, this plant can be installed in a few weeks, anywhere in Quebec, Canada or abroad. Here the cells for all types of batteries would be produced: electric bicycles, cordless tools, solar panel batteries, forklift batteries or electric vehicles.

Call-2-Recycle

The startup has just signed a first deal with Appel-à-Recycler, the agency that holds a monopoly on the recovery of all lithium-ion batteries in Canada. “It was an essential condition for starting our business: having access to those thousands of batteries sent to the trash and preventing their destruction. In this sense, we do useful work, reduce waste and act in favor of the environment”, completes Mr. Simonnet.

“It was really an important deal for us, because without the supply chain, we wouldn’t be able to do our work. »

Through its “Quebec Strategy for the Development of the Battery Sector”, the government of Quebec has made this sector one of its priorities and has announced massive investments. However, until now, the companies involved were all concentrated in Montreal and Bécancourt and the plant projects are slow to start. If EVA’s strategy may seem more modest, its team nevertheless intends to demonstrate that it will be the most agile and deliver its first cells before the others.

About EVA Energia

The startup was founded in June 2022 by two Rimouskiers: Igor Simonnet, who is an experienced computer scientist and has extensive knowledge of the investment sector, and Jean-Louis Chaumel, who has long experience in renewable energy.

Very quickly, the company began measuring the potential recovery rate of cells from battery samples collected at the Ecocentro, in collaboration with the city of Rimouski.

It was the signing of the agreement with Appel-à-Recycler that really took off for EVA, as this agreement offered him the possibility to access around 50 tons of various types of lithium-ion batteries, waste all over Quebec.

At the same time, the company is developing an automated cell diagnostics system and is working to design a new factory concept, the first of which could see the light of day in a few months. EVA Energie expects to go into the first round of funding by the end of 2022.

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