Under the leadership of German university TU Braunschweig, eight consortium partners from industry and science have laid the foundation for a network of pilot lines across Europe concerning the research and development in the production of modern lithium-based battery cells.
The creation of the LiPLANET network, short for “Li-Ion Pilot Lines Network”, is aiming to accelerate the industrial series production of modern battery technologies. The European Commission is funding the project for two years with the provision of two million euros as part of the Horizon 2020 program.
“The timing for our activities is well chosen,” says Professor Arno Kwade, head of the Institute for Particle Technology at TU Braunschweig and LiPLANET project manager. “European battery cell production has only just begun to position itself in competition with Asian competitors,” he explained. “Our European industry needs strong research and development, which is significantly connected and strengthened by the network. Such a cross-border network for battery pilot lines, which brings together all important players, is unique in the world.”
Among other things, the project will create an exchange platform for knowledge and data as a basis for cooperation between industry, academia and pilot lines, as well as being able to develop standards for the qualification of pilot lines. The network should make it possible to identify gaps in knowledge and technical equipment as well as using training and measures to close the existing gap between materials research and development and the industrial production of battery cells. The network should be able to lay the groundwork for simplification when increasing the scale of production.
In terms of partners, the core consortium of the project includes EIC InnoEnergy, EMIRI, the AIT Austrian Institute of Technology, CEA Liten, CIDETEC Energy Storage, ABEE – Avesta Battery Engineering and VDI/VDE Innovation & Technik. The TU Braunschweig is responsible for managing the initiative. The Battery LabFactory Braunschweig (BLB) in Germany is located at the Braunschweig site with close links to the Lower Saxony Research Centre for Automotive Engineering (NFF). At BLB are again eight institutes of the TU Braunschweig as well as one institute each of the Leibniz University of Hannover, the TU Clausthal and the Physikalisch-Technische Bundesanstalt.