Driving UK electrification: £50m battery centre opened in Coventry

Posted on 22 Mar 2019 by Maddy White

The automotive industry’s future is electric, and this shift is hugely disrupting supply chains. One of the key challenges to overcome is the increasing demand for electric batteries.

electromobility electric car vehicle ev charge charging recharging battery transport mobility - image courtesy of Depositphotos.
Carmakers are racing to create efficient electric vehicles – image courtesy of Depositphotos.

Carmakers are racing to create efficient electric vehicles to replace traditionally powered ones.

A report published earlier this year predicted that by 2021, the cost of battery powered electric vehicles will match that of petrol and diesel fuelled cars in the UK.

An additional 21 million electric vehicles (EVs) will also be on roads across the world over the next decade, according to the analysis from Deloitte.

Britain will end the sale of new conventional petrol and diesel cars and vans by 2040, this to align with the climate initiative, the Paris Agreement. It too forms part of plans to make the UK world-leading in electric and energy efficient vehicles.

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How to power them?

A £50m facility for creating batteries for EVs has opened in Coventry yesterday giving a boost to the UK’s position in electrification.

The Centre For Advanced Low-Carbon Propulsion Systems (C-ALPS) opened yesterday at Coventry University’s Innovation Village – image courtesy of Mike Sewell.

The Centre for Advanced Low-Carbon Propulsion Systems (C-ALPS), a collaboration between Coventry University and global engineering specialist FEV Group, is looking to harness academic and commercial expertise to support the development of the next generation of electric, hybrid and combustion engines.

Operating within Coventry University’s Future Transport & Cities Research Institute, the C-ALPS centre has been built to be reportedly the most advanced test facility of its type currently available in Britain.

The capabilities will be available to OEMs, SMEs in the supply chain and technology partners who are looking to accelerate the creation of new propulsion systems for use across automotive, aerospace, marine and rail sectors.

The infrastructure will house test benches for powertrain components, including turbochargers, catalytic converters, battery systems and electric machines.  

This comes after £20m was announced to create the UK Mobility Data Institute, a focused research centre to collect, process and analyse transport data generated from autonomous and electric vehicles. Data aggregation and analysis could underpin the future of all transport systems and dictate how they are built, regulated and used.

JLR charge ahead

The British automotive giant, will sell original E-Types that have been restored and converted to run on battery power – image courtesy of JLR.

Britain’s biggest car manufacturer, Jaguar Land Roverannounced that from 2020, all new vehicles manufactured will be electrified.

JLR will also commence production on its electric E-Type Zero model, with the first deliveries expected in summer 2020.

From later this year, Electric Drive Units (EDU) will be produced at the company’s Engine Manufacturing Centre in Wolverhampton.

These EDUs will be powered by batteries assembled at a new Jaguar Land Rover Battery Assembly Centre located at Hams Hall, North Warwickshire.

According to JLR, the centre will use new production techniques and technologies to manufacture battery packs for its future cars.