Britishvolt signs agreement to develop high-nickel EV batteries

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By Nick Carey

LONDON (Reuters) – Electric vehicle (EV) battery startup Britishvolt said on Monday it has signed an agreement with a British government-backed research center to develop high-nickel batteries and more energy-dense materials so that it is preparing for mass production.

Nickel demand is expected to surge over the next decade as electric vehicles become more widespread. Nickel enhances energy storage in the cathode of a battery, which in turn extends the range of an electric vehicle.

The automotive industry is working to increase the range of electric vehicles by investing heavily in research into more energy-dense batteries.

Britishvolt said it has entered into a two-year, multimillion-pound deal with the UK Battery Industrialization Center (UKBIC) to develop and assemble its next generation of sample battery cells for mass production and commercialization.

The UKBIC is a government-funded facility set up to help the UK automotive industry bring new battery technology to market.

Britishvolt said on Friday it had secured UK government backing for its planned battery factory in northern England, unlocking 1.7 billion pounds ($2.31 billion) of private funding.

The startup’s 30 gigawatt-hour (GWh) factory in Blyth is set to begin production in 2023. It will be built in three phases and when it reaches peak production in 2027, it should be able to produce batteries for over 300,000 vehicles per year.

(Reporting by Nick Carey; editing by Jonathan Oatis)

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