Powering the UK’s battery industry

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New funding for the Faraday Battery Challenge allows it to build on the momentum, nationwide learning and industry support generated since it began in 2017.

The funding was announced today (21 October 2022) by the Faraday Battery Challenge at UK Research and Innovation (UKRI).

The additional £211 million in funding allows the challenge to exploit the momentum, nationwide learning and industrial support generated since it began in 2017.

The challenge will use the funding to further develop a UK battery technology industry that is high tech, high value and high skill.

Research, innovate, scale-up

Run by Innovate UK for UKRI, the Faraday Battery Challenge combines:

  • research and capability development at the Faraday Institution to:
    • reduce battery weight and cost
    • increase energy and power
    • ensure reliability and recyclability
  • collaborative business-led innovation in the UK battery sector, development of the wider network and skills needed to manufacture batteries through Innovate UK
  • manufacturing scale-up and skills development at the UK Battery Industrialisation Centre (UKBIC). The national battery manufacturing development facility.

Build on success

Through Innovate UK the challenge has already supported over 140 organisations working across the UK, attracting over £400 million in co-investment to produce batteries that are increasingly:

  • sustainable
  • resilient
  • safer
  • lighter weight
  • lower cost
  • higher performance.

It enabled the Faraday Institution to unite 500 researchers across more than 25 universities to improve current and develop future battery technologies.

By 2021 it had built and opened the world-class UKBIC in Coventry. Three years ahead of its nearest European competition.

UKBIC’s research and development funding has so far supported over 140 UK battery developers, working on more than 80 research and innovation projects, successfully scale their products to market.

Deliver the future

Since 2017 the Faraday Battery Challenge has enhanced current generation batteries while developing next generation batteries designed to meet the long-term needs of the transport sector.

With 100,000 new jobs predicted to be needed in gigafactories and the wider battery supply chain by 2040, the challenge is helping the UK meet the growing automotive demand for batteries.

The challenge has built globally competitive, scientific capability at scale harnessing the UK’s best talent to solve the challenges for battery technology and deliver a net zero future.

Critical net zero technology

Faraday Battery Challenge Director, Tony Harper said:

This new funding allows us to strengthen the foundation we’ve created by consolidating and building on the UK’s position to become a battery science superpower.

We now have an opportunity to ensure that our national industrialisation infrastructure remains world leading in this fast-evolving critical net zero technology.

Creating a sustainable future

Professor Dame Ottoline Leyser, Chief Executive of UKRI, said:

Advanced battery technology will play a central role in our lives and the economy, reducing our reliance on fossil fuels, creating new jobs and opening up new opportunities.

The Faraday Battery Challenge is at the forefront of the clean technology revolution, catalysing collaboration and innovation that will benefit society.

This exciting work and the further investment announced today underlines the ways in which research and innovation can help to create a sustainable future while driving economic growth.

Further information

About the Faraday Institution

The Faraday Institution is the UK’s independent institute for electrochemical energy storage research, skills development, market analysis, and early-stage commercialisation.

Bringing together expertise from universities and industry, the Faraday Institution endeavours to make the UK the go-to place for the research and development of new electrical storage technologies for both the automotive and wider relevant sectors.

The Faraday Institution is funded by the Faraday Battery Challenge at UKRI. Headquartered at the Harwell Science and Innovation Campus, the Faraday Institution is a registered charity with an independent board of trustees.

About UKBIC

The UK Battery Industrialisation Centre (UKBIC) was opened by the Prime Minister in July 2021.

The national battery manufacturing development facility provides the missing link between battery technology, which has proved promising at laboratory or prototype scale, and successful mass production.

Based in Coventry, UKBIC welcomes:

  • manufacturers
  • entrepreneurs
  • researchers
  • educators.

It can be accessed by any organisation with existing or new battery technology, if that technology brings green jobs and prosperity to the UK.

In addition to funding from the Faraday Battery Challenge through UKRI, UKBIC is part-funded through the West Midlands Combined Authority.

The facility was delivered through a consortium of Coventry City Council, Coventry and Warwickshire Local Enterprise Partnership and WMG, at the University of Warwick. This followed a competition in 2018 led by the Advanced Propulsion Centre with support from Innovate UK.

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