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Mumbai: Coal tar derivatives company, Epsilon Carbon has forayed into the battery material business by setting up a manufacturing facility in the Ballari region of Karnataka to produce graphite anode materials for Lithium-Ion batteries.

“As India pushes an aggressive EV policy…Epsilon’s manufacturing of graphite anodes will make India self-sufficient for a key raw material for LiB cells,” said Vikram Handa, Managing Director of Epsilon Carbon.

The company through its newly formed subsidiary, Epsilon Advanced Material, has planned to invest Rs 500 crore by 2025 to establish 50,000 tonnes of anode material capacity, Handa added.

Anode materials include carbon materials and alloy-based materials including silicon, tin and antimony, and nitrides.

The phase 1 of the project which was to set up manufacturing facility to produce 2500 tonnes per annum (TPA) of bulk carbonaceous mesophase, a key raw material in making Lithium ion batteries, is over and the company is working on expanding the capacity to 15,000 tpa by the end of FY21.

Epsilon has protected its knowhow and technology by filing patents globally.

“Epsilon Advanced Materials, is formed with the purpose of becoming a preferred supplier of synthetic graphite material to cell manufacturers and energy storage device companies across the globe,” the company said in a statement.

Trials have been initiated with anode material producers and cell manufacturers globally to start the qualification phase, Handa said in a statement.

The Mumbai-based company will also be supplying customized graphite powder that is used in a variety of specialized products and industries. These include molding and castings for the metal industry, brake linings, lubricants, and crucibles used in a variety of applications.

The company in March 2020 said that it is planning to set up a Rs 900-core integrated carbon black facility in Ballari district, Karnataka, with a total capacity of 3,00,000 tonnes per annum. However, with delays due to Covid-19 the plant will be commissioned by October 2020, the company said.

Carbon black is an additive used in rubber products such as tyres, colouring pigment inks and also as electric conducive agents for high-tech devices.