January 15, 2021 @ 15:52 by Richard Dawson
The company behind an 8000-job industrial investment in the North East has entered into an exclusive technology collaboration agreement with Siemens.
Battery technology investor Britishvolt made national headlines last year when it unveiled a £2.6 billion blueprint to open a huge electric vehicle battery manufacturing plant in Blyth.
The ‘gigaplant’ is described as the largest investment of its kind since Nissan opened a car plant in Sunderland in 1984.
The collaboration will see Siemens provide Britishvolt with access to its automation, electrification and manufacturing execution technologies.
This will stimulate gigaplant production processes and flows ahead of construction completion. It also promises to speed up delivery times, allowing Britishvolt to stay on track to deliver the first lithium-ion batteries at the end of 2023.
Additionally, Siemens is providing British with its design and simulation tools, accelerating the time it takes for state-of-the-art lithium-ion battery cells to go from laboratory to production at scale.
Britishvolt CEO Orral Nadjari said: “We are delighted to enter into this technology collaboration.
“Working with Siemens and utilising its global expertise in Digital Twin and simulation technologies will play a pivotal role in Britishvolt achieving its tight deadlines to begin producing world-class batteries, at scale, by the end of 2023.
“Being able to simulate production of lithium-ion batteries and cell development speeds up a complicated process and allows us to bring crucial batteries to market quicker.
“Working with leading global partners such as Siemens helps us stay firmly on course in our mission to build the UK’s first battery gigaplant.”
Carl Ennis, CEO of Siemens GB and Ireland, added: “This is an exciting and vital project to quickly ramp up availability at commercial scale of the batteries required by the electric vehicle market to help the UK reach its carbon net zero goals by 2050.
“In order to give manufacturers and end customers the confidence to switch to electric vehicles, we need to have this crucial part of the supply chain here in the UK.
“Siemens has the manufacturing and energy infrastructure technology and services to help Britishvolt build the most efficient, sustainable gigaplant.
“We are keen to start working with Britishvolt to get the Blyth site operational by 2023, supplying batteries and delivering crucial investment in the North East, helping to level up the UK economy.”