Where are the 18650s?
You might have noticed that much of our stock of many 18650 cells is running low or out. We’re still analyzing cells! But a few things have conspired to keep us from updating stock.
First, and this is a Big Deal – we’re looking for a larger space to operate. We’ve been busy forging partnerships and building up our supply of recycled batteries, and our current location isn’t large enough to handle the added throughput. We actually have more cells than ever; we just haven’t added them to inventory yet because we’re moving them to a new location soon.
We're able to do this because we've been actively working on investment to expand our operation. In fact, we will have some Big News in the coming weeks; 2022 is shaping up to be a massive year for us, one that will see an increased presence and expansion beyond 18650s. Keep refreshing our website for updates.
Second, our BESS builds have taken many of our cells. Yes, we use the same cells we sell individually in our battery assemblies! And no, we don't cherry pick any cells for our builds. However, we do prioritize BESS builds over loose cell sales, and our batteries contain only one model of cell to maximize uniformity and performance. That means that we need around 130 of Samsung ICR18650-22 cells to make a 24v one kilowatt-hour battery.
Finally, we’ve changed the way we grade cells. We’re always improving our grading methodology to better understand actual remaining life, so we've added an internal resistance test in addition to capacity. Our new analyzers do this automatically, then spit the data into a database so we can assign them a grade based on performance characteristics as compared to their as-new specs. We’ve analyzed dozens of thousands of 18650 cells totaling more than 100 kWh of actual capacity, and we’ve been able to reuse nearly two-thirds of them. In fact, the National Science Foundation have invited us to submit a grant proposal to create a more in-depth means of analyzing cells for Second Life use and correlate as-received condition with remaining cycle life. The consequences of this research will be massive.
If you’re looking for cells, reach out to us and ask. Chances are, we have them in stock, it’s just not reflected on the website yet. We can typically work with you on pricing and availability for larger orders, too.