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India to manufacture indigenous lithium-ion batteries

India to manufacture indigenous lithium-ion batteries

On 10 June, a Memorandum of Agreement was
signed between the Central
Electro Chemical Research Institute
(CECRI)
under the Council
for Scientific Industrial Research
, and the
RAASI Solar
Power Private Limited group
, for the first transfer
of technology for lithium-ion batteries in India.

In an official
press statement
,
the Ministry of Science and Technology said that up until now, India’s source of
lithium-ion (Li-ion)  batteries have been
China, Korea, Japan, Taiwan and a few other countries. Due to India’s lack of
mineral reserves, it has become one of the
largest importers, and in 2017 it imported nearly US $150 million worth of
lithium-ion batteries.

The technology has been developed by a
group of scientists at the Council for Scientific Industrial Research (CSIR)'s
CECRI in Karaikudi, Tamil Nadu's, in partnership with CSIR-National Physical Laboratory, CSIR-Central Glass and
Ceramic Research Institute
, Kolkata and CSIR-Indian Institute of Chemical Technology
in Hyderabad.

The press
release said that a demo facility has already been set up to manufacture
prototype lithium-ion batteries in Chennai. The project has procured international
intellectual property rights with the potential to enable cost reduction,
coupled with appropriate supply chain and manufacturing technology for mass
production. Dr Harsh Vardhan, the
Minister of Science and Technology
, said that this project is
evidence of the CSIR’s ability to provide technology in critical areas to
support the industry.

The RAASI Group will set up the manufacturing facility in the
Krishnagiri district of Tamil Nadu, which is located near Bangalore.

Dr Harsh Vardhan
stated that the project will boost the Indian Prime Minister Mr Narendra Modi’s
two flagship programmes – generating 175 gW (Giga Watts) by 2022, out of which
100 gW will be solar and the second, the National
Electric Mobility Mission
, to switch completely to electric vehicles
by 2030.

The initiative
falls in line with Indian Prime Minister’s “Make in India” plan that is
to increase India’s manufacturing capacity and reduce the outflow of foreign
exchange. It will not only provide independence from other nations but also has
the potential to increase clean energy production in the country.

The Founder and Managing Director of the RAASI
group, Mr C. Narsimhan said that the idea is to bring down the cost of cell
manufacturing to IN ₹15,000 (about US $223) per kW (Kilo Watts) to replace Lead
Acid Battery. It also plans to make lithium-ion batteries for rooftop solar
panels with a lifespan of 25 years and make it affordable enough to power the Photo
Voltaic segment
.

Lithium-ion batteries have applications in
energy storage systems and can power a number of electrical applications such
as hearing aids, electric vehicles, portable electronic sector, grid storage,
telecommunication towers, and medical devices etc., without the use of physical
wires.