ZAF Energy Systems receives investment from Wirtz Manufacturing to ramp up nickel-zinc battery production in Missouri
ZAF Energy Systems, a developer of next-generation battery technology, and Wirtz Manufacturing, an equipment designer and technology expert for the lead-acid battery market, are pleased to announce that Wirtz has made a strategic investment in ZAF Energy Systems. The investment will expand ZAF’s manufacturing capacity from hundreds of batteries per month to thousands of batteries per month in the ZAF Joplin, Missouri, facility. This added capacity will allow ZAF to rapidly seed the market and meet the growing customer demand for its rechargeable nickel-zinc (NiZn) batteries globally. This investment in a full production line will allow licensing and joint venture (JV) partners to validate the quality and throughput of the technology for commercially-scaled factories that are expected to begin buildouts in 2019.
Wirtz has a long history of driving new technology innovations in the battery industry. “We became very excited in partnering with ZAF when we experimented with the ZAF electrodes and found that we could produce plates at similar production rates as lead-acid technology after seeing the performance improvements and cost savings being delivered by nickel-zinc battery technologies, and we are proud to invest in ZAF to bring its next-generation technology to the marketplace,” commented John Wirtz, CEO of Wirtz Manufacturing.
“The investment from Wirtz, a respected leader and innovator in the battery industry, offers further validation of the company’s NiZn battery technology. As ZAF continues to commercialize our technology it is vital to have a partner like Wirtz,” commented ZAF Energy Systems President and CEO Randy Moore.
ZAF’s batteries are helping to meet customer demands for powerful, cost-effective, and environmentally friendly battery solutions. “We’re seeing our technology perform well in rigorous battery performance testing by major commercial trucking, telecommunications, and large-scale data storage companies,” Moore added. “Customers are ready to place orders as soon as our manufacturing capacity is available, and this investment will help us do that. We believe our partnership with Wirtz provides ZAF with best in class manufacturing equipment lines to ensure our quality is both excellent and consistent worldwide.”
The investment by Wirtz follows a $600,000 investment commitment ZAF received last year from Missouri’s Department of Economic Development Fund. These investments are being used by the company to hire employees, expand production, and forge strategic partnerships. This additional production capability will further enable ZAF to accelerate licensing and joint venture negotiations and commercialize its NiZn batteries on a global scale.
ZAF’s NiZn batteries have potential uses in a wide range of applications including: automotive, heavy trucking, remote telecom, and renewable energy. NiZn batteries are poised to disrupt the $50 billion conventional lead-acid battery market with its ability to provide twice the storage capacity and three times the power of legacy lead-acid batteries in a smaller, lighter package.
News item from ZAF