Graphite’s pivotal role in electric-vehicle battery technology is coming under increasing scrutiny. Graphite is almost exclusively produced in China, and while the processing of the mineral poses serious environmental issues, the alternatives appear costly. Ian Morse looks at what’s next for critical graphite supplies.
With demand for cleaner forms of energy and a greater need for flexibility and reliability in the power supply, the role of battery energy storage is critical. Innovation in battery technology is essential to match demand growth and the shift in technical requirements. Predictions of 400,000 MWh of battery storage required by 2025 means that all battery technologies will play a role in contributing to a clean energy future.
Demand for batteries is going nowhere but up, as new factories seem to appear almost every week with promises to power electric vehicles, consumer electronics, and grid-connected storage. But the lithium-ion technology that all of these rely on is not without drawbacks, and a whole host of new storage solutions is eager to get out of the laboratory.
The annual report has placed EVs at the heart of India’s decarbonization and called for an Indian answer to the U.S. ‘Motor City’ of Detroit, where electric vehicles and the batteries to run them could be manufactured.
Researchers in the U.S. have confirmed the existence of a novel state of the element manganese, first proposed in a journal dating from 1928, which could allow for the development of low-cost, high performance batteries for grid level, and other energy storage applications.
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