AMTE, a manufacturer of lithium-ion battery cells, has become one of the first commercial customers of the UK Battery Industrialisation Centre (UKBIC).
The £130 million UKBIC allows organisations in the UK to prove whether their technologies, from electrode and cell materials through to battery modules and packs, can be manufactured at the required volume, speed, performance and cost to be commercially successful.
The news comes after the UKBIC announced the opening of its module and pack assembly line, the first part of the 18,500m2 facility to have been installed and commissioned at the open access battery development facility in Coventry.
AMTE Power is already well placed, believing itself to be one of only five UK commercial battery cell manufacturers, with its purpose-built cell manufacturing facility in Thurso, Scotland. The new agreement will enable the team to transition from product development in Thurso to larger scale manufacturing at UKBIC.
The agreement will initially see the development of AMTE Power’s Ultra High-Power cell, which has been designed for the rapidly growing automotive market specifically targeting high-performance sports cars and high powered off-highway vehicles.
AMTE Power will use UKBIC to prepare materials, aid design for manufacture, manufacturing processes and parameters, at scale, representing an important period of refinement in advance of AMTE Power’s high volume manufacturing plans.
The new agreement will be pivotal in supporting AMTE Power’s aim to provide a reliable, scalable supply alternative for the UK automotive industry. With the ban on new petrol and diesel cars from 2030, this collaboration is crucial in paving the way for AMTE’s cell scale-up programme.
A key part of the company’s increased production plans centre on the building of a new UK manufacturing facility with a capacity of approximately 2GWh per annum, known as a gigafactory. The company expects to confirm plans for the development of the gigafactory in 2022.
Kevin Brundish, CEO of AMTE Power, commented: “We are very proud to be one of the first UK manufacturers to use the UKBIC facility as it marks a crucial step for AMTE and the UK battery industry. It will no doubt be critical in helping us to underpin our scale up plans for manufacturing to enable us to serve the significant potential demand we see for our products in the automotive, oil & gas and energy storage markets.”
Jeff Pratt, managing director of UKBIC, added: “We’re delighted to be working with AMTE Power on the development of its battery technology, one of the first commercial customers to use our facility. Once completed later this year, UKBIC will play a key role in the development of skills, technology, abilities and knowledge as the UK shifts towards electrification.”