LCV2017: Pioneering battery technologies unveiled at Millbrook

The latest battery technologies for electric and hybrid vehicles are on show for the first time at this year’s Low Carbon Vehicles (LCV) 2017 event.  The pioneering results of the £14 million AMPLiFII (Automated Module to pack Pilot Line) project are being exhibited and demonstrated, showcasing the next generation of automotive traction batteries and the automated assembly methods to manufacture them. A dedicated AMPLiFII stand at LCV2017 includes:
–    A JCB battery pack designed for integration in to JCB machines
–    A Jaguar Land Rover concept technology demonstrator
–    The latest Ariel Motors prototype sports car
–    Exhibits demonstrating the WMG pilot battery manufacturing facility

The AMPLiFII project is a forerunner of the government’s Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund, Faraday Challenge, a £246 million investment in battery technologies over the next 4 years which was launched earlier this year by Secretary of State, Greg Clark.

The consortium project has been funded by the Office for Low Emission Vehicles (OLEV) in partnership with Innovate UK. It has been led by WMG, at the University of Warwick, where the pilot facility to manufacture modules and packs is located.  The project brings together the research excellence of WMG and the University of Oxford with leading OEM partners Jaguar Land Rover, JCB, Alexander Dennis (ADL), Ariel Motor Company, as well as technology specialists Delta Motorsport, Potenza Technology, Trackwise and Horiba MIRA. The project’s environmental challenges have been met through collaboration with sustainability partners Axion and Augean.

The AMPLiFII scalable module offers energy density over 50% greater than leading competitor modules and is adaptable to high power and energy applications including motorsport, off-road plant, cars and buses. It will also support the development of a credible UK supply chain for Lithium-Ion module and pack manufacture.  WMG created a pilot line to enable collaborators and industrial partners to develop and prove manufacturing processes for future modular battery systems at automotive production rates. Environmental solutions including the re-purposing of packs for domestic energy storage and elemental recovery were also investigated.

AMPLiFII was first announced at LCV2015 and the project finishes in October.  Simon Edmonds, Manufacturing and Materials Director at Innovate UK said: “The results from this important and pioneering project have been invaluable to the development of the Faraday Challenge by showing how successful innovations in battery technology can meet customer needs and grow the UK supply chain.”

David Greenwood, Professor, Advanced Propulsion Systems at WMG said: “The AMPLiFII project has been a great springboard for the UK battery supply chain. Through the concerted efforts of a large consortium, we have developed class-leading battery module designs and the manufacturing processes to go with them. We have also established a national facility at WMG where companies and universities can come to develop battery module and pack manufacturing technologies, which will be open to new enquiries from October.”

Bob Womersley, Engineering Director – Hybrid Programmes, at JCB said: “The newly developed pack will provide a high quality, cost effective battery that can be applied to a new generation of hybrid construction machines and will be of significant benefit in the continuing innovation and global success of JCB.”