DOE to award up to $133M for advanced vehicle technologies research

The US Department of Energy (DOE) announced up to $133 million in funding to support new and innovative advanced vehicle technologies research. Funded through the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, this funding opportunity (DE-FOA-0002197) supports projects in advanced batteries and electrification in support of the recently announced DOE... Read more →


OXIS Energy has successfully tested its Lithium-sulfur (Li-S) battery cell prototypes at 471Wh/kg and is confident of achieving 500Wh/kg in the next 12 months. Consistently shipping cells at 400Wh/kg to its clients in Europe, the US and Japan, OXIS is collaborating with major European chemical partners to develop an advanced... Read more →


Domestic production of lithium, the lightest of elemental metals, is considered a priority for the US. It is essential for the manufacturing of lithium-ion batteries commonly used for everything from electric vehicles to cell phones and laptops. However, lithium is sourced almost exclusively from other countries, either concentrated using a... Read more →


Engineers at Rice University’s Brown School of Engineering have combined a macroporous silicon anode and alumina-coated NMC cathode to provide stable cyclability by means of capacity-limited charging. Their Si-NMC full-cell design with alumina passivation on cathode has exhibited a stable capacity of 1000 mAh/g, with 1.2 times higher energy density... Read more →


Researchers at the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology have developed a high-capacity, long-life lithium-sulfur battery using a bi-functional cathode substrate for Li–S batteries made of well-distributed boron carbide nanoparticles decorated activated cotton fiber (B4C-ACF). Long-term cycling test results of Li–S battery with S/B4C-ACF electrode at 1 C. Zhang... Read more →


Mercom Capital Group, llc, a global clean energy research and communications firm, released its report on funding and mergers and acquisitions (M&A) activity for the Battery Storage, Smart Grid, and Energy Efficiency sectors for 2019. According to the report, global VC funding (venture capital, private equity, and corporate venture capital)... Read more →


In the Bergedorf quarter of Hamburg, a container with a total capacity of approximately 500 kWh has been connected to the depot charging network at the Verkehrsbetriebe Hamburg-Holstein (VHH) depot. There, MAN Truck & Bus and VHH want to work together to test how used batteries behave after initial use... Read more →


Following the production of first prototypes of battery enclosures for a Chinese automotive manufacturer in 2018, SGL Carbon has now received a substantial contract from a North American automaker for high-volume serial production of carbon and glass fiber-based composite top and bottom layers for battery enclosures. The serial production of... Read more →


Enevate announces new 4th-generation Si-dominant battery technology; optimized for high volume production

Enevate, a developer of advanced silicon-dominant Li-ion battery technology capable of extreme fast charging for electric vehicles (EVs), announced its new fourth-generation technology optimized for high volume commercialization and manufacturing at gigafactory scale. The new XFC-Energy technology achieves 5-minute charging to 75% capacity with 800 Wh/L cell energy density. Today’s... Read more →


New simulations by Rice materials scientist Ming Tang and graduate student Kaiqi Yang, detailed in the Journal of Materials Chemistry A, show that too much stress concentration in widely-used lithium iron phosphate cathodes can open cracks and quickly degrade batteries. The work extends recent Rice research that demonstrated how putting... Read more →


AKASOL will supply battery systems for more than 40 Coradia iLint hydrogen trains (earlier post), which have been ordered from Alstom by the Lower Saxony Transit Authority and the Rhine/Main Regional Transport Association. With this major order in the low double-digit million euro range, AKASOL is expanding its operations in... Read more →


IBM, Daimler researchers use quantum computer to simulate Li-sulfur battery chemistry

Researchers at IBM and Daimler AG have used a quantum computer to model the dipole moment of three lithium-containing molecules, with an eye on moving closer to next-generation lithium sulfur (Li-S) batteries. In a research paper published on arXiv.org, the researchers report simulating the ground state energies and the dipole... Read more →


In August 2019, CRU reported on the steady slide in prices that has occurred in the lithium market since the beginning of the year. Since then, prices have continued to fall, CRU notes. Lithium carbonate prices in China dropped between January and August 2019 by nearly 20% since the beginning... Read more →


DOE launches Energy Storage Grand Challenge

The US Department of Energy (DOE) launched the Energy Storage Grand Challenge, a comprehensive program to accelerate the development, commercialization, and utilization of next-generation energy storage technologies. The Grand Challenge builds on the $158-million Advanced Energy Storage Initiative announced in President Trump’s Fiscal Year 2020 budget request. The vision for... Read more →


USABC awards $919,000 Li-ion active material coating technology assessment contract to Physical Sciences; EV requirements

The United States Advanced Battery Consortium LLC (USABC), a subsidiary of the United States Council for Automotive Research LLC (USCAR), and a collaborative organization of FCA US LLC, Ford Motor Company and General Motors, has awarded a $919,000 contract to Physical Sciences Inc. (PSI) for an active material coating technology... Read more →


A study by an international team of researchers warns that the global transition to global low-carbon energy technology could be at risk unless new international agreements and governance mechanisms are put in place to ensure a sustainable supply of rare minerals and metals. Their paper is published in Science. Climate... Read more →


Monash-led team develops efficient Li-S battery

An international team of researchers led by Monash University has developed an ultra-high capacity Li-S battery that has better performance and less environmental impact than current lithium-ion products. An open-access paper on their work is published in Science Advances. Lithium-sulfur batteries can displace lithium-ion by delivering higher specific energy. Presently,... Read more →


California Energy Commission to award up to $11M for non-Li-ion energy storage projects

The California Energy Commission (CEC) has released a solicitation (GFO-19-305) to fund innovative, non-Li-ion energy storage research projects, including green electrolytic hydrogen systems. The Commission notes that the state’s statutory requirements (SB-350, SB-100) for low-GHG electricity cannot be met with currently fielded technologies alone, because those technologies do not have... Read more →


Highview Power Storage, Inc., a provider of long duration energy storage solutions, and Encore Renewable Energy, a developer of renewable energy generation and storage projects, jointly announced plans to develop the United States’ first long-duration, liquid-air energy storage system. This facility will be a minimum of 50MW, provide in excess... Read more →


Toyota launches new intellectual property licensing program

Toyota has launched a new program to license its Intellectual Property to interested parties. Toyota IP Solutions is intended to help promote and serve as an access point for the licensing of patents to US and global companies. Initially, the patent portfolios available for licensing will be in four areas:... Read more →


As the lithium-ion batteries that currently power most phones, laptops, and electric vehicles become increasingly fast-charging and high-performing, they also grow increasingly expensive and flammable. A team of engineers at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute has demonstrated how they could—by using aqueous electrolytes instead of the typical organic electrolytes—assemble a substantially safer,... Read more →


The battery-electric BMW iX3, the production of which will commence in 2020, will offer a range of more than 440 km (273 miles) (WLTP) with a net-battery size of 74 kWh. The first purely electric Sports Activity Vehicle (SAV) is the trailblazer for the fifth-generation (Gen5) BMW eDrive technology, which,... Read more →


IBM Research announces heavy-metal-free battery design; partnering with Mercedes-Benz R&D to advance the discovery

IBM Research announced a chemistry for a new battery based on three new and different proprietary materials, which does not use heavy metals or other substances with sourcing concerns. The materials for this battery are able to be extracted from seawater, laying the groundwork for less invasive sourcing techniques than... Read more →


The global maritime transport industry has submitted a proposal to the UN IMO to form the world’s first collaborative shipping R&D program to help eliminate CO2 emissions from international shipping. The proposal includes core funding from shipping companies across the world of about US$5 billion over a 10-year period. International... Read more →


Audi and Umicore start closed loop for cobalt and nickel; more than 90% of Co and Ni in e-tron batteries can be recovered

Audi and Umicore have successfully completed the test phase of their strategic research cooperation. (Earlier post.) The result is that more than 90 of the cobalt and nickel in the high-voltage batteries of the Audi e-tron can be recovered. The car manufacturer and the materials technology and recycling expert are... Read more →


Northvolt launches recycling program targeting 50% recycled material in new Li-ion cells; “Revolt”

European Li-ion battery maker Northvolt has launched Revolt—a program devoted to recycling of lithium-ion batteries. As a first move towards securing a European ecosystem for lithium-ion battery recycling, Northvolt will establish a pilot recycling plant in Västerås, Sweden, adjacent to Northvolt Labs manufacturing plant. The pilot plant is anticipated to... Read more →


New doped graphene cathode with MoS2 loading enables highly stable Li-sulfur battery

A team at the University of Manchester (UK) has developed a doped graphene cathode for highly stable lithium-sulfur batteries. In an open access paper in the Nature journal Communications Chemistry, they report 100% charge capacity of Li-S batteries using the cathode material with 500 charge/discharge cycles at 0.5 C, 1... Read more →


DOE issues Notice of Intent for 2020 advanced vehicle technology research

The US Department of Energy’s Vehicle Technologies Office published a notice of intent to issue a Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) titled “Fiscal Year 2020 Advanced Vehicle Technologies Research FOA.” This FOA may include the following topics: Lithium-ion batteries using silicon-based anode. The objective of this potential area of interest is... Read more →


BMW Group signs €540M supply contract with Ganfeng for lithium from mines in Australia

As part of its electromobility expansion, the BMW Group is deepening its existing business relationship with Ganfeng Lithium based in Jiangxi (China). The two companies have signed a 5-year (2020 - 2024) supply contract for the lithium needed as a key raw material for battery cells. Ganfeng is the world’s... Read more →


FCA joins Responsible Sourcing Blockchain Network to help build a more ethical EV supply chain

FCA has joined the Responsible Sourcing Blockchain Network (RSBN), an industry collaboration using blockchain technology to support sustainable, responsible sourcing and production practices from mine to market. Built on the IBM Blockchain Platform and assured by RCS Global Group, the RSBN is on track to become commercially operational by spring... Read more →


The European Commission has approved under EU State aid rules an Important Project of Common European interest (IPCEI) jointly notified by Belgium, Finland, France, Germany, Italy, Poland and Sweden to support research and innovation in the common European priority area of batteries. The seven Member States will provide in the... Read more →


Scientists at Rice University’s Brown School of Engineering have discovered that placing specific defects in the crystalline lattice of lithium iron phosphate-based cathodes broadens the avenues through which lithium ions travel. Their theoretical calculations show a potential improvement in performance of up to two orders of magnitude and point the... Read more →


ECS, Toyota Research Institute release RFP for 2020-2021 fellowship award; focus on fuel cells and solid-state batteries

ECS, in partnership with the Toyota Research Institute of North America, a division of Toyota Motor Engineering & Manufacturing North America, Inc., is seeking proposals from young professors and scholars pursuing innovative electrochemical research in green energy technology. Proposals for the 2020-2021 ECS Toyota Young Investigator Fellowship for Projects in... Read more →


UK-based Nexeon, a company engineering silicon materials for next generation lithium-ion batteries, has acquired three important sets of patents relating to the use of silicon in lithium ion battery anodes. The granted patents have global coverage and were previously owned by Litarion GmbH, and were acquired following that company’s insolvency.... Read more →


Adamas: despite global drop in EV sales, battery materials remain strong

Following a reduction of buyer incentives in China earlier this year, the resultant drop in global monthly EV sales continued through October 2019, which saw a 19% reduction in passenger EV sales versus the same month the year prior, according to Adamas Intelligence. The global sales-weighted average passenger EV’s battery... Read more →


SK Innovation signs 6-year agreement with Glencore for up to 30K tonnes cobalt; batteries for 3M EVs

SK Innovation has signed a six-year agreement with Glencore for up to around 30,000 tonnes of cobalt contained in hydroxide between 2020 and 2025. Glencore projects approximately 30,000 tonnes of cobalt production per year through 2022 with its Katanga mine in Africa (DRC). SK Innovation said that by signing the... Read more →


GM, LG Chem to form JV, invest $2.3B to build new EV battery cell plant in Ohio

General Motors and LG Chem are partnering to mass-produce battery cells for future battery-electric vehicles. Together, the companies will invest up to a total of $2.3 billion through a new, equally-owned joint venture company. The JV will establish a battery cell assembly plant on a greenfield manufacturing site in the... Read more →


Mercedes-Benz Cars has opened a factory for plug-in hybrid (PHEV) batteries in the Bangkok region in Thailand. The new battery factory was built on a 50,000 m² site located at the vehicle manufacturing plant in the Bangkok region. The new plant is the third production facility in the company’s global... Read more →


Battery prices, which were above $1,100 per kilowatt-hour in 2010, have fallen 87% in real terms to $156/kWh in 2019. By 2023, average prices will be close to $100/kWh, according to the latest forecast from research company BloombergNEF (BNEF). Cost reductions in 2019 are thanks to increasing order size; growth... Read more →


As commercial vehicle manufacturers and fleet owners transition to battery-electric powertrains, they must manage a new set of mobility variables. Factors such as the battery system’s state-of-charge (SOC), overall health, driving range and charging times are critical considerations in optimizing urban and long-haul transportation networks that rely upon this alternate... Read more →


A team from Zhejiang A&F University, Huazhong University of Science and Technology (HUST), and Stanford University have developed a binder-free, flexible, and free-standing electrode comprising an unprecedented 92% silicon content for Li-ion batteries. The structure shows an ultrahigh electrode-specific capacity of 2700 mAh g−1, excellent cycling stability under a high... Read more →


Northvolt and Mälarenergi are partnering to establish a battery energy storage system at an electric vehicle charging station in Västerås, Sweden. The battery system will provide power output up to 220 kW and a usable energy capacity of 320 kWh. The Northvolt battery system is intended to reduce peaks in... Read more →


Skeleton Technologies launches SkelCap SCA0300 ultracapacitor platform

Skeleton Technologies, a European provider of ultracapacitors and ultracapacitor energy storage systems for automotive, transportation, and grid applications, is bringing to market a new ultracapacitor product platform, the SkelCap SCA0300, to address the fast-growing markets in manufacturing and warehouse logistics. The strict power quality requirements in manufacturing are driving the... Read more →


Group14 Technologies announced $18 million in new financing from Amperex Technologies Limited (ATL), Showa Denko (SDK), Cabot Corporation, BASF Venture Capital, and OVP Venture Partners. The new funds will be used to scale-up manufacturing of a next-generation silicon-carbon composite anode material and advance into commercial production. Group14 Technologies—a 2016 spin-off... Read more →


Valmet Automotive has started the production of EV battery packs in its new plant in Salo, Finland. The battery plant project has progressed on schedule, and with the ramp up of production volumes, Valmet Automotive will continue recruiting more employees to the Salo plant. Valmet Automotive has completed the first... Read more →


BMW boosts CATL battery order to €7.3B, signs €2.9B battery order with Samsung SDI

The BMW Group is deepening its existing business relationships with battery cell manufacturers CATL (Contemporary Amperex Technology Co. Limited) and Samsung SDI. The original CATL order volume of four billion euros announced in mid-2018 will now be increased to €7.3 billion (contract duration from 2020 to 2031), with €4.5 billion... Read more →


Webasto exhibited elements of a new modular battery system, thermal management and charging solutions in Ford Motor Company’s booth recently at the 2019 SEMA Show in Las Vegas. Webasto won Ford’s 2019 Best of Show Stand Award for Outstanding Achievement in Design for Mustang Lithium, a one-off battery electric prototype... Read more →


Nikola Corporation to unveil novel battery cell technology; 500 Wh/kg on production cell

Nikola Corporation said that it has developed a new battery that has a record energy density of 1,100 Wh kg-1 on the material level and 500 Wh kg-1 on the production cell level—including casing, terminals and separator—more than double current lithium-ion battery cells. The Nikola prototype cell eliminates binder material... Read more →


Atieva, the Silicon Valley-based technology wing of Lucid Motors, announced that the spec battery pack of its own design will power the entire 24-car Formula E field for the upcoming 2019/20 race season in association with its partners. The Formula E battery pack was conceptualized, designed, tested, and manufactured by... Read more →


Cree and ABB partner on silicon carbide high-power semiconductors

Cree, Inc. and ABB’s Power Grids business are partnering to expand the rollout of silicon carbide in the rapidly-growing high-power semiconductor market. The agreement incorporates the use of Cree’s Wolfspeed silicon carbide-based semiconductors into ABB’s comprehensive product portfolio, enabling Cree to broaden its customer base while accelerating ABB’s entry into... Read more →