THOUSANDS of jobs are expected from the creation of a £14million new automotive project at Warwick University.
Warwick Manufacturing Group, at the university, will lead a consortium to create a new automotive battery pack manufacturing research centre.
The project is expected to create jobs in manufacturing and an evolving new supply chain, including in the Coventry and West Midlands region.
The project will help develop the next generation of traction batteries for electric and hybrid vehicles.
The UK’s innovation agency Innovate UK have given £10 million funding to support the project.
Called AMPLiFII (Automated Module-to-pack Pilot Line for Industrial Innovation), the project is led by WMG and brings together Jaguar Land Rover, JCB, Alexander Dennis (ADL), Ariel Motor Company, PAISEU, Vayon Group, Delta Motorsport, Potenza Technology, RDVS, Trackwise, HORIBA MIRA, The University of Oxford, and Axion Recycling. The work also supports the UK Advanced Propulsion Centre (APC) National Spoke for Electrical Energy Storage.
Professor Lord Bhattacharyya, chairman of WMG said: “The global energy storage market will be worth $50bn by 2020; of this, $21bn will be in transportation.
“Automotive is well on its way to displacing consumer electronics as the biggest user of energy storage.
“This project will play a significant role in the evolution of that market by creating a UK supply chain for battery packs to suit hybrid and electric vehicles requiring volumes from hundreds to thousands of units per year.
“It will also create a lasting facility at WMG for the development of future battery packs. This will also create thousands of jobs in this field.”
Professor David Greenwood from WMG, University of Warwick, said: “The volumes of battery packs traditionally required in this market have found it difficult to justify the high levels of development cost and effort. However by developing and creating a modular battery architecture, based on cylindrical cells for both high power and high energy requirements, the supply chain will be able to aggregate demand for components from many applications and benefit from significant economies of scale.
“AMPLiFII will create a battery supply chain with mass-production standards of robustness that is high quality, low cost and fast to market.”