Axion Power International, a developer of lead-carbon PbC batteries, has said that it is completing final preparations for construction of an automated production line for its proprietary PbC negative electrode.

The new turnkey production line, as well as two second generation stations for the existing automated production line, is being designed by an engineering firm.

The first new station will be on line in the second quarter of this year, with the second and final redesigned station to follow in the third quarter. The second production line is expected to be completed and in operation by the end of the fourth quarter of 2010.

Thomas Granville, CEO of Axion Power, said: “When you set out, with limited funds, to design a production facility to make something that’s never been made in quantity before, there are significant challenges. We had several ‘start, stop, start over, modify’ instances along the road but, as a result, we now are extremely knowledgeable about manufacturing our product and will greatly benefit from this experience.

“The incremental experience will be invaluable to our new design firm. We raised $26m at the end of 2009 for the express purpose of increasing our capacity and improving the methods of manufacturing our PbC product. This raise enabled us to engage the ‘design and build’ expertise we need to put line 2, and future production lines, in place at our facility in New Castle.”