GREENFIELD — Photon Automation and Blue Whale Energy & Innovation (BWE&I), a battery testing and evaluation lab, announced in a press release Monday that the two companies will enter a partnership.

With this partnership, BWE&I will have testing capabilities through Photon Automation and manufacturing facility at 501 W. New Road in Greenfield. BWE&I would offer performance testing and abuse testing of li-ion cells, models and packs of varying chemistries to further help serve Photon’s existing battery manufacturing clients and any new clients in need of performance testing for li-ion, lead acid and complex chemistries.

Bill Huffman, CEO of Photon Automation

Photon Automation, in Greenfield since 2000, provides customized assembly lines for battery manufacturing and laser welding capabilities, with automated assembly using robotics for advanced manufacturing processes, inspection and testing, and processes for assembling and testing EV batteries.

BWE&I is a subsidiary of Blue Whale Materials LLC, a li-ion battery recycling company providing full life cycle solutions. According to the press release, BWE&I supports everyday energy needs with the ability to test and validate batteries, ranging anywhere from an alkaline AAA battery to lithium cells and modules in EV’s and hybrids.

Danny Marshall, Lead Manager of Testing and Evaluation at Blue Whale Energy & Innovation, said that with being located in Greenfield as Eclipse Energy since 2012, and now as BWE&I, both Photon and BWE&I are committed to and confident in Greenfield’s role in the growing battery economy.

“For battery manufacturers that are looking to scale their battery cell, module, and/or pack technology, laser welding coupled with automation is often necessary to drive robust system level efficiency and safety,” Marshall said. “These services help to set up an automated manufacturing line, allowing Photon to offer their best-in-class services for both at their facility in Greenfield. Additionally, it’s important to test these batteries, modules, and packs – that’s where BW E&I’s expertise comes in.”

Marshall also said that in grading the quality and safety of a battery, various metrics like state of health, reserve capacity and internal resistance are important.

“Under this partnership, BWE&I will establish testing capabilities at Photon’s facility, making it easier for customers to move seamlessly from design to test in one place,” Marshall said.

Bill Fletcher, Sales and Marketing Manager at Photon, said in the press release that with this opportunity, “Photon offers best-in-class laser welding and automation technology for battery module and pack assembly and with this new partnership, we can offer end-of-line testing capabilities to our customers through BWE&I’s capabilities.”

Fletcher said that with this with partnership, it will be able to expand both companies capabilities, whereas in the past if they needed to stop a project at a certain point, now they can continue by adding the additional testing on battery projects with the partnership with BWE&I.

Fletcher said that BWE&I will be placing equipment at the Photon facility that will be directly related to projects brought through, having a dedicated space where they can operate.

According to the press release, BWE&I testing of for li-ion batteries and complex chemistries “will bring a streamlined experience from prototype manufacturing to fully characterized and validated mass-produced battery packs.”

Fletcher said that while nothing will change from the outside looks wise, anything that is going battery development, from prototype to completed designs is happening here in Greenfield.

“They have an expertise, we have an expertise and putting those two things together just makes for a great combination,” Fletcher said.

The press release said that while under this partnership, BWE&I will have a satellite testing lab at Photon and will maintain its testing capabilities in their lab, including more than 700 test channels and abuse testing capabilities at their Fields Boulevard location in Greenfield.

“Whether it’s leveraging our enhanced testing capacity (now up to 420V), discussing automated manufacturing solutions with Photon, or delving into the many facets involved in battery degradation, we’re excited to support and elevate endeavors with Photon in this new partnership,” said Marshall in the press release.

Marshall said that, along with the announcement of their partnership, they are launching a series of educational and training courses on batteries that will be open to a wide range of experience and expertise levels in the future.