A new $20 million batteries research lab is being set up in Singapore to study how innovative nanomaterials could be used to produce “safer and more efficient” batteries.
The lab, jointly financed by Canadian utility Hydro-Quebec and the NanoBio Lab of the Singapore-based Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR), which will be housed in Singapore’s biomedical research hub— Biopolis.
The firms have signed a memorandum of understanding for the project, which will employ more than 30 researchers.
A*STAR said the joint laboratory “aims to improve solid-state batteries, which are considered to be a safer alternative to lithium-ion batteries, as they do not use flammable liquid electrolytes”.
“In particular, the lab will focus on developing new nanomaterials and nanotechnologies for electric vehicles and energy storage that are safe, efficient and cost-effective,” A*STAR said.
NanoBio Lab chief Professor Jackie Ying said: “Since 2011, we have worked with Hydro-Québec to improve the performance and safety of existing batteries. Through in-depth technology exchange, we have created many interesting new materials and we are delighted to significantly expand our collaboration in order to accelerate our technology R&D efforts towards commercialisation.”
Last January, Hydro-Quebec said it had agreed a licensing deal for solid-state lithium battery technology it developed to be used in electric vehicle batteries made for the Chinese market.
The deal with Dongshi Kingpower Science and Technology included cooperation to build a pilot battery assembly line at Kingpower’s factory in China.