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Interesting that they don’t mention the Amazon vans. Those will be a big consumer of that battery inventory for the next several years.
 

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Interesting that they don’t mention the Amazon vans. Those will be a big consumer of that battery inventory for the next several years.
In the Reuters article is just says vehicles, other people may be extrapolating the R1T and R1S from there and forgetting about the Amazon vehicles but does not look like that was the distinction from the announcement.

I also wish I could see the actual press release as it does not say anything about exclusive supplier either in the article. They could just be adding them as an additional source as the initial information I recall reading had LG as the supplier.

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Here's the full Reuters report with a quote from RJ:
(Reuters) - Electric vehicle startup Rivian, backed by Amazon.com Inc and Ford Motor Co, said on Monday that South Korean manufacturer Samsung SDI Co Limited would supply battery cells for its vehicles.

Rivian, which aims to put an electric pickup and SUV in production this year, said it had been working with Samsung throughout the process of developing the battery cells.

“We’re excited about the performance and reliability of Samsung SDI battery cells combined with our energy-dense module and pack design,” said RJ Scaringe, chief executive officer of Rivian.

The U.S.-based startup has raised $8 billion since the start of 2019 and added $2.65 billion funding in an investment round led by T. Rowe Price in January.

The Tesla Inc rival has been in talks with bankers about its plans to go public and is aiming for an initial public offering in September at a valuation of about $50 billion or more, Bloomberg News reported earlier this year.


Interesting quotes as well via the IEVs article linked above.

"Rivian’s R1T pickup and R1S SUV deliver an unmatched combination of performance, off-road capability and utility – the rugged duty cycle requires the module and pack to be designed to operate across challenging temperature and durability extremes. Rivian vehicles in development for fleet purposes will be in near-constant operation during the day and will operate in a wide range of thermal environments."

"Rivian has developed its battery module and pack to efficiently handle these challenging use cases. The battery management system has been engineered to intelligently respond to how a vehicle is being operated or charged. Extensive cell characterization testing across a wide range of operating conditions enables the battery management system algorithms to optimize the performance and life of the battery pack."
 

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InsideEVs mentioned in their article that Rivian is expected to use 2170-type cylindrical cells. Similar ones to the Tesla Model 3 and Y.

Rivian definitely isn't breaking any new ground re:battery tech. GM should be commended for going with large-format pouch cells; this approach has higher energy density and specific energy than cylindrical cells of the same chemistry. Tesla originally choose cylindrical cells just because they were ubiquitous, but I think pouch cells are the way (at least until solid state tech arrives, if ever). You can buy 48V PACKS comprised of Li-NMC pouch cells on Aliexpress that are 280+ wh/kg, and cheap to boot.

The nascent electric aircraft market pretty much solely relies on NMC pouch cells, because specific energy is everything in an electric aircraft. The only downside is that they tend to be explode-y if punctured or over-heated, but these are both solvable problems.
 

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This is a pretty big development for Normal, Illinois and Rivian. Normal is reportedly a finalist for Samsung's new lithium-ion battery cell manufacturing plant in the US.


A new lithium-ion battery factory for electric vehicles might be built next door to Rivian.
Samsung SDI is in the process of selecting a location for its new lithium-ion battery cell manufacturing plant in the U.S. and according to the latest reports, Bloomington-Normal in Illinois is one of the three finalists.
One of the main factors when choosing a location is the proximity to customers. In the case of Normal, the Samsung SDI plant would be next door to Rivian's plant (acquired from Mitsubishi a few years ago).
Samsung SDI supplies 2170-type cylindrical cells for the Rivian R1T and Rivian R1S electric vehicles, so we guess that this is the battery form factor that will be produced at the site.
Nothing is yet decided, but WGLT reports that the Bloomington-Normal area has strong chances. U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin said:
“We’re competing for a major Samsung battery facility. The delegation came from (South) Korea this week. I spoke to them, and others did as well. This Samsung facility, we hope, would be located next door to Rivian. That decision has not been made. Having that battery facility will also create thousands of jobs.”
The investment scale would be a “billion-dollar deal” and it would create up to 3,200 new jobs. We guess that the plant will have a double-digit number of GWh of annual manufacturing capacity.

The South Korean manufacturer might count on various local incentives, including a property tax abatement, "roadwork on West College Avenue and utility work that would extend sewer toward Normal’s west edge."
We don't know the other finalists, however, we heard that Rivian is searching for a location for its second electric vehicle plant in the U.S., which would be combined with a battery cell plant. It could be located in Texas. We guess that Samsung SDI might be interested in this location as well.
 
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