HYDRA kicks off the development of sustainable, next-generation Li-ion batteries for electric vehicles

The HYDRA project successfully kicked off on September 16th, 2020. After a four month delay due to the COVID-19 Pandemic, the project partners came together for a virtual meeting. The event was hosted by SINTEF with a welcome from CEO Alexandra Bech Gjørv. Over two days, the partners reviewed the objectives of the project and planned actions to begin the implementation.

Some of the participants in the HYDRA virtual kick-off meeting.

The project is coordinated by Dr. Simon Clark, a research scientist at SINTEF. “High-performance and affordable electric mobility is a cornerstone technology for reducing air pollution in cities and enabling the future of the Green Transition,” says Clark. “The cost and lifetime of electric vehicles are largely determined by the battery pack, which can be heavy and expensive. HYDRA is developing advanced battery materials, cell designs, and manufacturing methods to address these challenges in a sustainable way.”

HYDRA will focus on the development of Generation 3b Li-ion batteries, which combine high-capacity anode materials with high-voltage cathode materials to store significantly more energy with less weight and volume in a safe electrolyte. In addition to the research goals of the project, the consortium includes partners from industry to ensure that the findings support the growing European battery industry.  

“HYDRA is an important project to progress sustainable manufacturing of next generation battery materials in Europe, and Elkem is pleased to contribute,” says Stian Madshus, Vice President of Elkem Battery Materials. “This effort fits well with Elkem’s activities to supply solutions to the battery industry and the EV market, including graphite for anodes, silicon for tomorrow’s anodes and silicone solutions for battery packs and modules.”

Project partner Corvus Energy develops Energy Storage Solutions (ESS) for the maritime industry. “Running such a comprehensive project with experts across the value chain will create the momentum needed to accelerate the development towards the next generation batteries free of critical raw materials. With this project, we will also be able to further reduce the cost for the end-user by improving battery sizing algorithms and lifecycle analysis through more advanced characterization methods and cell modelling framework,” says Chief Technology Officer Lars Ole Valøen.