The state-owned Indian Oil Corporation and an unnamed ‘foreign’ start-up are reportedly set to build an electric vehicle battery plant in India using domestically-available, “non-lithium raw material”.
Indian Oil’s chairman Sanjiv Singh (pictured) told the country’s media the plant would have a production capacity of 1GW, but did not name the overseas partner.
Singh said: “The lithium-ion battery we see today is not the only answer, or the best answer. For a country like India, we don’t have a single grain of lithium. So, if you are looking at EVs in a very big way, we have to look for something that is indigenously available.
“We have already tied-up with one company and are working on a solution that can be manufactured 100% indigenously.”
The plant could be built in 25MW or 50MW phases, however, the chairman said the development of longer-life and recyclable EV batteries was “a puzzle yet to be solved”.
Indian Oil had not responded to BEST Battery Briefing’s request for details of Singh’s announcement at the time of going to press.
Indian Oil’s director for research and development, SSV Ramakumar, reportedly said the battery plant would use “chemistries which are India-centric, whose raw material is easily available in this country, whose recycling technology is extremely mature, and whose recycling industry is well established in this country”.
Earlier this year, Ramakumar said the group had developed technology to “increase the lifetime” of lead-acid batteries— but have yet to give details.
In 2018, Indian Oil signed energy technology tie-up deals with Israeli companies— including one developing aluminium-air battery systems.