An EU Horizon Project on Sustainable Battery Manufacturing

BatWoMan Podcast Episode 2: Mats Zackrisson

Our second podcast episode is all about Life Cycle Assessment (LCA). For this topic, Theresa talks to Mats Zackrisson who is leading the work package on Sustainability and Digitalisation within the BatWoMan EU horizon research project. Mats is a leading researcher at Research Institutes of Sweden (RISE) in Stockholm, which is were Theresa sat down with him for this interview to be recorded on the second day of the project’s general assembly meeting in 2023.

When doing LCA, all impacts of a product or service on its environment are being assessed, from cradle to grave. This starts at the raw materials and goes all the way through manufacturing and operation to the products end-of-life and partly beyond, i.e. when parts of the product are being recycled.

LCA data are an integral part of the information that needs to be included in battery passports. Starting from 2027, in the European Union battery passports will be required for all EV and industrial batteries over 2kWh. Thus, LCA and storage of these as well as other data in a safe but accessible battery dataspace becomes crucial.

BatWoMan Podcast Episode 1: Katja Fröhlich

Katja and Theresa first talk about Katja’s background and how she discovered her passion for battery manufacturing. They then discuss upscaling and the aim of the BatWoMan project, which is to reduce emissions and production costs during the manufacturing of Li-ion batteries in order to support European battery cell manufacturing. The project includes various parts that tackle mostly the manufacturing of Li-ion batteries but also their lifetime. When speaking about the manufacturing steps that BatWoMan is trying to improve, Katja mentions highly viscuous electrode slurry, the replacement of NMP with water and the reduction dry room needs. Feel free to smurk when listening to how it took ages for Theresa to understand that the function of the dry room is not to dry something of water but just to keep things dry during production.

They talk about different battery chemistries of primary and secondary cells. Then Katja gives some insights into other research which is going on at AIT, including solid-state batteries. The conversation then centers back on the BatWoMan project and the specific steps during battery cell manufacturing that are tackled for emission and cost reduction, ranging from cheaper and less electrolyte to 3D-structured electrodes improving electrolyte filling. Last, the briefly touch the topic of a digital battery dataspace and passport as well as life cycle assessment but these are topics which Theresa will discuss in a lot more detail in the second episode when she talks to Mats Zackrisson.

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