Fraunhofer starts new research facility for battery cell production

Fraunhofer starts new research facility for battery cell production

Energy storage systems are of crucial importance to all sectors of industry involved in the energy and mobility transition. The idea behind Germany’s ‘Forschungsfertigung Batteriezelle’ is to create a development center for battery cell production that will serve the whole of Germany. Known by its German abbreviation FFB, the new battery cell research facility will close the current gap in the value chain of primary and rechargeable batteries and eliminate the need to depend on other markets.

The project team, which consists of the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft and its research partners, is now embarking on the first steps to put the FFB concept into practice at the chosen location of Münster in the federal state of North Rhine-Westphalia.

Over the past decade, Germany has regained its standing at the top of the international battery research league. Despite this, there continues to be widespread reluctance among German industrial concerns to enter the realm of high-volume battery cell production. The FFB research facility aims to reduce technological hurdles and investment risks for companies by addressing knowledge gaps and fostering comprehensive expertise along the entire value chain from the production to the recycling of battery cells. To achieve this goal, it will rely on the expertise of local partners at the University of Münster as well as on RWTH Aachen and the Fraunhofer Groups for Materials, Production, Microelectronics, and Information and Communication Technology. The FFB will focus on the production of modern, high-performance energy storage systems – not just for e-mobility, but also for applications in domestic settings, industry, logistics, the energy sector, chemicals, mechanical and plant engineering and robotics.

As a key driver of innovation, the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft is a particularly good choice of organization to set up and operate a project on such an ambitious scale. The Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft’s proposal for the first part of the project – to establish and put into operation an initial production line – has now been approved by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF), which has allocated funding of around 150 million euros.

“Battery technology is tremendously important because it is a key technology for Germany as a hub of research and industry,” said Professor Wolf-Dieter Lukas, State Secretary at the BMBF. “The German federal government is determined to reinforce the country’s leadership in battery technology along the entire value chain, and the FFB represents a key element in the BMBF’s strategy to achieve this. Combining scientific expertise and a solid roadmap for the future, Münster is an excellent choice of location. We’re delighted to see the first concrete steps being taken to bring this vital project to fruition.”

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Source: “Fraunhofer begins setting up a new research facility for battery cell production”, Jan Eitner, Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft.