27 July 2017

Will battery boost benefit Britain?

The UK government’s decision to invest £246m in the development of battery technology puts energy storage at the heart of its industrial strategy.

The so-called Faraday Challenge – unveiled this week (Monday 24th July) by business secretary Greg Clark – will consist of three phases: an initial EPSRC led competition aimed at identifying key technologies, a second phase led by Innovate UK that will build on this research; and a final stage, led by the Advanced Propulsion centre, that will scale up and commercialise these technologies

The move has been widely praised across industry as a welcome investment that will help keep the UK at the forefront of a key area of technology.

Thanks to their ability to store excess energy at times of peak generation, batteries are seen as being critical to making the most of the UK’s renewable resources. Battery development is also a critical area of the UK’s fast-growing low carbon vehicle sector. The Faraday Challenge model has also been praised for the way in which it joins up the research base with industry.

However, whilst the UK does boast some genuinely world-leading capabilities in battery technology it’s not alone. Others have claimed that this is a relatively small investment that won’t enable the UK to keep pace with other countries.

What do you think about this latest announcement? Will it have an impact? Or are we likely to be outstripped by other more technologically ambitious nations? And should we even be investing in this area of technology?

Have your say in the poll here.

Courtesy of The Engineer


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