BMW expands solid-state battery development, partners with Solid Power

Alexi Falson

BMW has announced a significant step in its aim to develop a solid-state battery pack for its battery-electric vehicles, with the expansion of a joint agreement with US company, Solid Power.

Officially, BMW has expanded an already existing joint-agreement that adds a research and development licence atop Solid Power’s battery expertise, as BMW looks to create a working prototype in just a few years’ time.

BMW is eyeing-off an industry-first for the world of battery-electric vehicles, with the company hoping to produce the world’s first all-solid-state battery pack for its range of battery-electric vehicles.

Why solid-state batteries? Well, to keep it simple, solid-state batteries have a significantly more energy-dense chemical makeup that, according to Solid Power, offers anywhere between 50-100 per cent improved energy density over a typical lithium-ion cell.

This is achieved through a replacement of the liquid electrolyte with a sulfide-based solid ion conductor, and replacing the graphite anode with a lithium metal anode.

The company says the latest announcement means BMW can establish its own prototype line at its Munich facility, with Solid Power. It is expected to deliver the first full-scale automotive cells for BMW to test this year. BMW says that we can expect to see the first BMW prototype powered by an all-solid state battery pack at some point in 2025. BMW board member, Frank Weber, said:

“BMW remains committed to the pursuit of all-solid-state batteries, a technology which we believe has significant potential for the future. We look forward to working even more closely with Solid Power and adding the capability to produce solid-state cells based on Solid Power’s designs at our own pilot facility.”

Solid Power’s president and interim CEO, David Jansen, said: “Expanding our relationship with BMW is further evidence that both companies believe in Solid Power’s technology development and the value of solid-state batteries.”

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