Battery Pack Company Romeo Power Raises Funding From BorgWarner

By Dan Anderson ● May 9, 2019


Photo: Romeo Power Technology’s Battery Pack

Auburn Hills, Michigan-based auto supplier company BorgWarner has invested in battery pack company Romeo Power. Romeo Power was founded by Michael Patterson (founded InAuth and sold it to American Express in 2016) and Porter Harris (former Environmental Control and Life Support Systems Engineer at SpaceX and former Chief Battery Architect at Faraday Future).

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This round of funding was strategic as the companies created a new joint venture for selling full electric powertrains. And the joint venture will be 60/40 and BorgWarner will obtain the larger share.

“This joint venture will not only complement our strong existing propulsion portfolio, but we expect it to fill a gap in the marketplace between battery cell manufacturers and hybrid and electric vehicle customers,” said BorgWarner Morse Systems president and general manager Joel Wiegert. “We believe our global engineering and manufacturing footprint enables us to quickly commercialize cutting-edge technology, delivering even more value to our customers.”

Since Romeo launched, the company hired a number of engineers from Tesla, SpaceX, Apple, and Samsung to build energy storage systems.

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Patterson is leading the company as a whole while Harris is overseeing the engineering team. Harris has been credited as the lead designer of a number of world-renowned battery pack technologies such as the ones used on SpaceX’s Falcon 9 Rocket batteries, the Cargo Dragon Spacecraft batteries, and the Crew Dragon Spacecraft batteries. To build Romeo’s system, the company used its experience in energy storage systems for space and aerospace applications.

“This joint venture will help Romeo take a big step in the battery mobility sector by adding BorgWarner’s scale and resources,” added Patterson. “Romeo has a fantastic team that has accomplished a lot in the last four years. And now we’ll continue our progress, with the ability and resources to grow and accomplish our mission of advancing energy technology.”

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The battery modules and packs will include battery management systems with proprietary algorithms for enhanced performance and cycle life along with proprietary thermal engineering for active and passive cooling. And the addition of battery packs will energize BorgWarner’s existing product portfolio for hybrid and electric vehicles including electric motors, power electronics, high-voltage battery heaters, eAxle iDMs, and onboard battery chargers.

Romeo’s battery packs have a high energy density by 25% providing dramatically increased range and fast charge times — which decrease standard battery charge times by 15% to 30%. Plus the battery packs offer superior safety as all designs are built with inherent thermal runaway mitigation and features multiple fault-tolerant software and hardware to protect against cross cell propagation.