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3 minute read - 18th July 2022

UK Battery Industrialisation Centre marks 1st anniversary

The UK Battery Industrialisation Centre (UKBIC) – a manufacturing research facility supporting the nation’s journey towards a greener future in battery technology – has marked 12 months since its official opening.

The £130m national battery manufacturing scale-up facility celebrated its first anniversary on Friday 15 July, marking a full year since it was officially opened by Prime Minister, Boris Johnson. During his visit, the Prime Minister described the facility as a ”beacon of innovation and ingenuity – shining the way for a brighter, greener future for the battery sector in the UK.”

UKBIC plays a key role in the UK government’s Faraday Battery Challenge (FBC), a national UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) led programme to bring together research, development and scale-up, including supply chain and manufacturing development, in order to help organisations seize opportunities presented by the move to a low carbon economy.

The £130m UK Battery Industrialisation Centre has marked its first anniversary as it continues to support the scale-up of battery technology / Picture: UKBIC

Located in Coventry, the publicly funded facility welcomes manufacturers, entrepreneurs, researchers, and educators, and can be accessed by any organisation scaling up existing or new battery technology towards commercialisation. The facility has more than £60m worth of specialist industrial-rate manufacturing equipment installed for the benefit of UK industry, who can use it to develop their technologies and workforce towards volume production.

It employs a team of more than 100 engineers, technicians and back-office staff, which in turn will help to develop and grow UK battery production skills and knowledge for the industry.

Since first opening its doors in 2021, the facility has already played a crucial role in supporting some low carbon projects that are set to propel the UK’s path to net zero by 2050. Through industrial collaboration, UKBIC has enabled acceleration of opportunities for the most promising mid-stage research and development activities to accelerate scale-up and commercial exploitation.

In January, it was announced Britishvolt was to partner with UKBIC on battery cell development / Picture: UKBIC

Jeff Pratt, UKBIC’s managing director, said: “We’re proud of what we’ve achieved at UKBIC over the last 12 months. Most of our focus so far has been concentrated around customers developing batteries to support electric vehicles. However, there are lots of other sectors requiring our support, and there is still lots to be done.

“The Faraday Institution’s recent UK Electric Vehicle and Battery Production Potential to 2040 report predicts that by 2040, a successful battery industry in the UK could employ 170,000 people in electric vehicle manufacturing, 35,000 people in gigafactories and 65,000 people in the battery supply chain. This shows you that UKBIC is vital to growing the UK’s battery industry.”

Jacqui Murray, deputy director of the Faraday Battery Challenge, added: “It is fantastic to see UKBIC already benefitting from some of the UK’s most important innovation projects. We’re proud to support British businesses collaborate with the wider scientific community, and to help them lead the way in research and innovation worldwide and in making great strides in battery sustainability and safety.”

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