US DOE Makes $42M Available for Developing Better EV Batteries

A dozen projects will receive $42 million in financing from the United States Department of Energy (DOE) in order to strengthen the American distribution network for battery technology used in electric cars. The selected projects for this EVs4ALL program seek to increase the adoption of electric vehicles locally by creating long-lasting batteries that charge quickly, operate effectively and increase customers’ trust regarding the range issue.

According to the U.S. Secretary of Energy Jennifer Granholm, the number of EV sales has tripled since the commencement of the administration. If battery efficiency, resilience and cost are addressed, then the announced projects will attract many drivers to electric vehicles. In addition, it will also help America’s efforts in combating climate change by transitioning to a sustainable transportation system with domestically developed technologies.

Here are some of the 12 teams that have been chosen from universities, government laboratories and the corporate sector for this program.

24M Technologies in Cambridge, Massachusetts, will provide inexpensive, quick-charging sodium metal batteries for EVs that function well in low temperatures. Award is worth more than $3 million.

Arizona-based Ampcera will develop a thermally modulated solid-state battery (TMSSB) incorporating a thermally modulated cell technology (TMCT), developed by EC Power. It will be used in conjunction with a strong electrolyte containing high conductivity ions to enable faster charging under environmental conditions, as it also allows for a cold start in less than a minute at 20 degrees Celsius. TMSSB, which is composed of a silicon anode of high capacity together with a high-voltage cathode, is advantageous in cooler environments. The award is worth more than $2 million.

The National Renewable Energy Laboratory in Colorado will evaluate information and metrics relating to the potential dangers posed by the most recent modern cells. In order to avoid the risk of using modern cells for commercial purposes, the initiative will develop knowledgeable failure mechanisms and modes, pathway reactions and failure codes, as well as new technological capabilities and techniques. The award is worth almost $3.5 million.

Project K in Palo Alto, California will be in charge of creating and monetizing a lithium-ion battery alternative known as a battery with potassium-ion, whose system’s essential characteristics enable it to operate at lower temperatures and charge much more quickly than lithium-ion batteries. Funding provided is more than $2.5 million.

Sandia National Laboratories in Albuquerque, New Mexico, will create a new predictive framework for testing and modeling that will be used to assess the safety of advanced materials and cells for batteries at a preliminary phase. The amount of the award is $3.7 million.

In Thornton, Colorado, Solid Power Operating will develop a new composite cathode and three-dimensional structure based on lithium-sulfur batteries with a metal anode to allow higher energy density and quick-charging electric battery cells. Funding provided will total $5.6 million.

Virginia Tech in Blacksburg, Virginia, will develop electric vehicle batteries using cathodes free of cobalt and nickel metals, with quick-charging, weather-friendly electrolytes, along with elevated anodes made from coal. The total award will be around $2.9 million.

As all these projects bear fruit, they will give a big boost to the sales of all startups in the EV space, including Lordstown Motors Corp. (NASDAQ: RIDE), given the way in which different concerns of motorists will have been addressed by leveraging the funding provided by the DOE.

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