Scientists at Oak Ridge National Laboratory have created a composite that increases the electrical current capacity of copper wires, providing a new material that can be scaled for use in ultra-efficient, power-dense electric vehicle traction motors. ORNL scientists used new techniques to create long lengths of a composite copper-carbon nanotube... Read more →


The Porsche 718 Cayman GT4 Clubsport MR will tackle this year’s Nürburgring 24-hour race featuring a complete body kit made of natural-fiber composite materials for the first time. Since early 2019, Porsche manufactured the two doors and the rear wing of the small series racing vehicle out of a natural-fiber... Read more →


Elon Musk used Tesla’s much-anticipated Battery Day presentation not to disclose some super cell, but to outline an aggressive, comprehensive and radically innovative approach to battery design, manufacturing and vehicle integration that he projected will result in a 56% reduction in cost/kWh and a $25,000 electric vehicle in about three... Read more →


6K, a leading developer of microwave plasma technology for the production of advanced materials through its recently launched 6K Energy division, has developed NMC 811 at 1-3 microns as well as the capability to produce single crystal NMC. 6K Energy has developed NMC 811 at 1-3 microns, the smaller size... Read more →


Li-Cycle selects Rochester, NY as site for Li-ion battery recycling hub

Li-Cycle Corp. a lithium-ion battery resource recovery company, will invest more than US$175 million in its first commercial lithium-ion battery recycling Hub at Eastman Business Park (EBP) in Rochester, New York. (Earlier post.) The Hub is a wet chemistry/hydrometallurgical facility that will refine battery-grade materials from black mass generated from... Read more →


Roskill: Molybdenum demand to drop by more than 8% in 2020

Roskill expects demand for molybdenum to drop by more than 8% in 2020. The molybdenum market enjoyed three years of growing demand between 2016 and 2018, but macroeconomic concerns and a slower steel market resulted in a 2.3% decline in 2019. Mine supply continued to edge higher in 2019, albeit... Read more →


Nissan reports developing a new process that speeds up the development of car parts made from carbon fiber reinforced plastics (CFRP). Lightweight yet extremely strong, the material can be used to make cars that are safer and more fuel efficient. It can also lower a car’s center of gravity when... Read more →


Asphalt is a near-ubiquitous substance—it’s found in roads, on roofs and in driveways—but its chemical emissions rarely figure into urban air quality management plans. A new study now finds that asphalt is a significant source of air pollutants in urban areas, especially on hot and sunny days. Yale researchers found... Read more →


The European Commission presented an Action Plan on Critical Raw Materials, the 2020 List of Critical Raw Materials and a foresight study on critical raw materials for strategic technologies and sectors from the 2030 and 2050 perspectives. The Action Plan looks at the current and future challenges and proposes actions... Read more →


Adamas: cerium, lanthanum, terbium and recycling can help fill the magnet rare earth gap

As magnet rare earth prices rise and supplies become increasingly scarce through the second half of the decade, cerium, lanthanum and terbium will help fill the gap, according to Adamas Intelligence. As Adamas details in a new report, over the past decade, there have been numerous studies demonstrating the potential... Read more →


Traction batteries and motors in electric vehicles (EVs) are very different than the powertrain components of the internal-combustion engine vehicles they replace. Their meteoric rise will lead to much greater demand for several materials markets which otherwise would see only modest growth. For example, while the combustion engine and transmission... Read more →


Roskill: Green magnesium moving to commercial reality; China’s dominance under threat?

While China remains, for now, the world’s leading magnesium producer, alternative green technology-driven projects elsewhere are attracting attention as the industry in general looks to reduce its carbon footprint, and even China starts to close inefficient capacities, according to Roskill Information Services. Magnesium is a light metal with a density... Read more →


The Government of Saskatchewan will provide $31 million in funding for a Rare Earth Processing Facility in Saskatchewan, delivering on a key element of the 2030 Growth Plan. The facility will be owned and operated by the Saskatchewan Research Council (SRC). It will be the first-of-its-kind in Canada and will... Read more →


BMZ and Continental are making a rubber supply chain digitally traceable for the first time

The German Federal Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) and technology company Continental are making a rubber supply chain seamlessly electronically traceable—from cultivation in Indonesia and further processing through to tire production—for the first time. The creation of sustainable and traceable supply chains is an integral part of our... Read more →


Sunfire has successfully delivered the world’s most powerful High-Temperature Electrolyzer (HTE) for highly energy-efficient hydrogen production to Salzgitter Flachstahl GmbH. Within the GrInHy2.0 project, Sunfire’s HTE system with a rated electrical output of 720 kilowatts will be deployed in an industrial environment for the first time. GrInHy2.0 is another step... Read more →


DOE to award Enovix Corporation $3.2M for work on EV battery with silicon anode

Enovix (earlier post) has been selected to advance research and development on lithium-ion batteries using silicon-based anodes. The selection, recommended by the Vehicle Technologies Office, authorizes Enovix to complete negotiations for a $3.2-million federal award funded through the US Department of Energy’s (DOE’s) Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy... Read more →


Mafic USA and Materials Group partner to increase use of basalt fiber in automotive industry

Mafic USA and The Materials Group (TMG) have allied to increase the use of basalt fiber compounded into injection molded thermoplastics within the automotive industry. Mafic recently began operations at the world’s largest basalt fiber production facility in Shelby, NC. TMG, located in Rockford, MI, is a thermoplastics manufacturer, distributor... Read more →


DOE awards $20M for research on rare earth elements

The US Department of Energy (DOE) announced $20 million for basic research aimed at ensuring a stable US supply of rare earth elements. The research will focus on improving the efficiency of both the use of the elements and their extraction from geological and recycled sources. It will also seek... Read more →


DOE issues request for information on materials that withstand harsh environments

The US Department of Energy (DOE) announced a request for information (RFI) about advances in components, systems, and products that can withstand harsh environments and extended service lifetimes. (DE-FOA-0002385) Equipment used in the US energy production, transportation, and industrial sectors regularly operates under conditions that are high-temperature, corrosive, oxidizing, mechanically... Read more →


Adamas: market for magnet rare earth oxides to increase five-fold by 2030

With total magnet rare earth oxide demand forecasted to increase at a CAGR of 9.7% and prices projected to increase at CAGRs of 5.6% to 9.9% over the same period, Adamas Intelligence forecasts that the value of global magnet rare earth oxide consumption will rise five-fold by 2030, from US... Read more →


Researchers from Chengdu Development Center of Science and Technology have significantly enhanced the performance of titanium niobium oxides for lithium-ion batteries. This has applications in electric vehicles and mobile electronics. A paper on the work is published in the journal NANO. Due to its high security and capacity, titanium niobium... Read more →


Canada Nickel launches subsidiary to develop zero-carbon production of nickel, cobalt and iron

Canada Nickel Company Inc. has created a wholly-owned subsidiary, NetZero Metals, to begin the research and development of a processing facility that would be located in the Timmins, Ontario region with the goal of utilizing existing technologies to produce zero-carbon nickel, cobalt and iron products. The Company has applied for... Read more →


UC Riverside (UCR) engineers have developed a way to recycle PET (polyethylene terephthalate) plastic waste, such as soda or water bottles, into a nanomaterial useful for energy storage. An open-access paper on the work is published in the journal Energy Storage. The researchers first dissolved pieces of PET plastic bottles... Read more →


DOE to award $20M to advance perovskite solar photovoltaic technologies

The US Department of Energy (DOE) announced $20 million in funding to advance perovskite solar photovoltaic technologies. (DE-FOA-0002357) Perovskites are a family of materials with a specific crystal structure, named after the mineral with that structure. When used to create solar cells, they have shown potential for high performance and... Read more →


A new survey conducted by DuckerFrontier finds that aluminum, already the fastest growing automotive material, is expected to grow to content levels of 514 pounds per vehicle (PPV) by 2026, up 12% from 2020 levels. Aluminum applications are classified into 2 categories (platform and component) and 13 groups. Platform Parts... Read more →


Orocobre Limited and Energy Exploration Technologies Inc. (EnergyX) have entered into a Letter of Intent (LOI) on working together on implementation of direct lithium extraction (DLE) technologies in promoting sustainable development and innovation in the lithium mining sector. Rising demand across the world for electric vehicles and a more efficient... Read more →


Scientists from Idaho National Laboratory and the University of California San Diego have shown that slow, low-energy charging causes lithium atoms to deposit on electrodes in a disorganized way that improves charging behavior. This noncrystalline, amorphous, “glassy” lithium had never been observed, and creating such amorphous metals has traditionally been... Read more →


Rio Tinto has approved an additional investment of almost $200 million to progress the next stage of the development of the lithium-borate Jadar project in Serbia. This will primarily fund the feasibility study, including the completion of detailed engineering designs, as well as permitting and land acquisition by the end... Read more →


Although intermetallic alloys potentially have high strength in a high-temperature environment, they generally suffer poor ductility at ambient and low temperatures, hence limiting their applications in aerospace and other engineering fields. Now, researchers led by scientists of City University of Hong Kong (CityU) have discovered that adding a small amount... Read more →


Toray to supply carbon fiber composite materials for Lilium’s all-electric air vehicle

Toray Industries concluded an agreement with Lilium GmbH to supply carbon fiber composite materials for the Lilium Jet. (Earlier post.) The Lilium Jet is a five-seater, emissions-free aircraft that can take off and land vertically and is designed to provide high-speed regional connections of up to 300km in under 60... Read more →


Scientists from ExxonMobil, University of California, Berkeley and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory have developed a new material that could capture more than 90% of CO2 emitted from industrial sources using low-temperature steam, requiring less energy for the overall carbon capture process. Laboratory tests indicate the patent-pending materials—tetraamine-functionalized metal organic frameworks—capture... Read more →


Researchers from the University of California San Diego (UCSD) and the University of Texas at Austin, with colleagues at the US Army Research Laboratory and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, have developed a thick cobalt-free high voltage spinel (LiNi0.5Mn1.5O4 (LNMO)) cathode material with high areal capacity. The paper on their work... Read more →


Global chemical company BASF and IntelliSense.io, a leading industrial artificial intelligence (AI) company, announced an exclusive partnership which will combine their expertise in mineral processing, ore beneficiation chemistry and industrial AI technology. The joint offering is called the ‘BASF Intelligent Mine powered by IntelliSense.io’ and delivers AI solutions embedded with... Read more →


Borealis, a supplier of polyolefin plastic materials for engineering applications in the automotive industry, announced the availability of Fibremod, its innovative carbon and glass fiber-reinforced polypropylene (PP) technology, for the North American automotive market. The Fibremod family of products enables automotive manufacturers to achieve weight-saving and process cost-saving targets. In... Read more →


Researchers at the Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab), in collaboration with Carnegie Mellon University, have reported in the journal Nature Materials a new class of soft, solid electrolytes made from both polymers and ceramics that suppress dendrites in that early nucleation stage, before they can propagate... Read more →


LeydenJar Technologies, a Dutch spin-out of the applied research institute TNO, has developed a new,100% silicon anode for lithium-ion batteries. This breakthrough offers two key benefits: batteries with a 70% higher energy density (1350 Wh/L) and 62% less CO2 emissions. The anode is ready for production and LeydenJar is preparing... Read more →


U Texas team develops cobalt-free high-energy lithium-ion battery

Researchers from the Cockrell School of Engineering at The University of Texas at Austin have developed a cobalt-free high-energy lithium-ion battery, eliminating the cobalt and opening the door to reducing the costs of producing batteries while boosting performance in some ways. The team reported a new class of cathodes anchored... Read more →


Scientists from ExxonMobil, the Georgia Institute of Technology and Imperial College of London have published in the journal Science joint research on potential breakthroughs in a new membrane technology that could reduce emissions and energy intensity associated with refining crude oil. Laboratory tests indicate the patent-pending membrane could be used... Read more →


DOE announces $139M in funding for 55 projects to advance innovative vehicle technologies

US Secretary of Energy Dan Brouillette announced $139 million in federal funding for 55 projects across the country that will support new and innovative advanced vehicle technologies (DE-FOA-0002197, earlier post). Funded through the US Department of Energy’s (DOE’s) Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE), projects will conduct research... Read more →


Geomega to recycle rare earths from USA Rare Earth’s anticipated neodymium magnet production

Geomega Resources Inc., a rare earth clean technologies developer for mining and recycling, and USA Rare Earth, LLC, the funding and development partner of the Round Top Heavy Rare Earth and Critical Minerals Project in West Texas, have entered into a Letter of Intent (LOI) to recycle rare earth-containing production... Read more →


EIT InnoEnergy, the European innovation engine for sustainable energy, announced a partnership with Vulcan Energy Resources Limited (Vulcan), a start-up lithium exploration company, to produce the world’s first completely carbon-neutral lithium in Germany. The partnership is part of Europe’s strategic industry initiative, the European Battery Alliance, aimed at building an... Read more →


KIT team develops minimally invasive technology to mine lithium in geothermal plants

Scientists at KIT have developed and patented a process for minimally invasive technology to mine lithium in geothermal plants. The plan is to extract lithium using a minimally invasive process from the deep waters in geothermal plants of the Upper Rhine Graben—an area that has particularly favorable geological conditions for... Read more →


BMW Group sources sustainable cobalt worth around €100M from Morocco for fifth-gen batteries

Recently the BMW Group signed a cobalt supply contract with Moroccan mining company Managem Group; the contract has a volume of around €100 million, said Andreas Wendt, member of the Board of Management of BMW AG responsible for Purchasing and Supplier Network. Managem is one of the world’s 5 largest... Read more →


The US Department of Energy (DOE) is awarding $100 million in funding for 10 Energy Frontier Research Centers (EFRCs) to accelerate the scientific breakthroughs needed to build a twenty-first-century energy economy. In recognition of the importance of teams in energy research, the EFRC program brings together researchers from multiple disciplines... Read more →


Demand for raw materials used in the production of electric car batteries is set to soar, prompting the UN trade body, UNCTAD (United Nations Conference on Trade and Development), to call for the social and environmental impacts of the extraction of raw materials, which include human rights abuses, to be... Read more →


The US Department of Energy’s (DOE’s) Office of Energy Efficiency & Renewable Energy (EERE) announced a request for information (RFI) (DOE-FOA-0002358) on challenges and opportunities in the upstream and midstream critical-materials battery supply chains. In this RFI, DOE specifically seeks input on the current state of the battery cathode materials... Read more →


The central component of the electrolyzer, which has a major influence on efficiency and reliability, is an ion-conducting membrane. Evonik has now developed a novel anion exchange membrane (AEM), which should contribute to the breakthrough of electrolytic production of hydrogen. Anion exchange membrane (AEM) electrolysis can potentially combine the beneficial... Read more →


The COBRA (CObalt-free Batteries for FutuRe Automotive Applications) project has been awarded a €11.8-million grant to develop Next Generation Cobalt-free batteries. COBRA, which aims to develop lithium, cobalt-free batteries made with new energy storage materials that incorporate intelligent sensors to help enhance their energy efficiency, is funded by the European... Read more →


Ampcera announces a low-cost and scalable solid electrolyte technology for solid-state batteries

Silicon-Valley-based Ampcera announced a low-cost flexible solid electrolyte (SE) membrane technology for solid-state batteries (SSBs). Unlike conventional lithium ion batteries (LIBs) that include a flammable liquid or gel polymer electrolyte, SSBs use a safe SE and promise to double the driving range of electric vehicles when loaded with the same... Read more →


DOE selects 11 manufacturing and materials projects to receive $3.3M for high performance computing research

The US Department of Energy (DOE) selected 11 projects to receive $3.3 million in federal funding for cost-shared research and development. The projects will use high performance computing to address key technical challenges in US manufacturing and materials development. Through DOE’s High Performance Computing for Energy Innovation (HPC4EI) initiative, selected... Read more →