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'Pioneering' electric car solid-state battery project receives share of £22m grants


Stock image (Credit: Shutterstock)
Stock image (Credit: Shutterstock)

A “pioneering” project developing technology for safer, high-powered electric car batteries has received a share of £22m in government grants.

Led by Southampton company Ilika, the PowerDrive Line project is focused on developing solid-state batteries, which could be a cheaper, high-capacity and non-flammable alternative to lithium-ion batteries. The initiative will investigate how to manufacture solid-state cells at scale in the UK, and how to integrate ultra-fast charging into vehicles.

The government also awarded grants to 11 other companies as part of the latest round of the Faraday Battery Challenge, which brings together researchers and industry to accelerate battery development.

“Innovative battery technology is changing the way we live, travel and work, and the government is committed to putting Britain at the heart of this energy revolution,” said business and energy secretary Greg Clark. “Today’s £22m investment in world-leading R&D projects is an example of our modern industrial strategy in action and will help pioneering companies realise the economic benefits the global transition to a low-carbon economy offers.”

Other recipients of the government grants included Williams Advanced Engineering, McLaren Automotive, Jaguar Land Rover and Aston Martin Lagonda, as well as several universities.

“Effective, efficient and sustainable transport is key to addressing so many of today’s challenges, from industrial growth to social inclusion,” said UK Research and Innovation chief executive Sir Mark Walport.

“Through advanced battery technology, we will unlock a new generation of electric vehicles, further improving vehicle performance and uptake, opening doors to innovative new transport ideas and significantly reducing environmental impacts.”

Content published by Professional Engineering does not necessarily represent the views of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers.

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