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Sodium-ion batteries for use in intralogistics: from scalable cathode active material production to prototype cells.

 The establishment of a production chain for sodium-ion batteries for industrial trucks

With possible energy densities of up to 200 Wh/kg, sodium-ion batteries are a promising alternative to common lithium-ion batteries (LIBs). One of the key factors that makes sodium-ion batteries (SIBs) so popular as an alternative to LIBs is the significantly better availability of sodium as a raw material. Sodium-ion batteries are based on the identical functional principle as LIBs but, in comparison use much more abundant and safer raw materials such as iron and sodium instead of lithium. Also, sodium is local available and therefore cheaper and it is easier to show a transparent supply chain. This has an important effect on both the environmental impact and the cost structure of battery production. In addition, it is possible to utilize existing production facilities for Li-ion and convert them to Na-ion batteries with very little additional investment.

The aim of the project is to establish a “Made in Germany” production chain for sodium-ion batteries, which are specifically intended for applications in fork lifter, bearing technology and industrial material handling technology. The goal is to explore and validate battery chemistry and manufacturing processing. As part of the project, the partners will build and test prototype cells and modules based on the materials produced by the consortium.