Stellantis also announced a cooperation with Factorial (update)
In terms of solid-state batteries (SSB) Mercedes will cooperate with the US company Factorial Energy in the future. Mercedes wants to develop the technology together with the SSB specialist from Woburn in Massachusetts. At his strategy event in July Mercedes had spoken of SSBs, but did not name a partner.
The technology cooperation with Factorial will range from the development of battery cells, modules and batteries to integration in Mercedes vehicles. The first cell prototypes are to be tested in the coming year.
Use of the SSB for the next five years – in a small series vehicle
Within the next five years, "the technology will be used for the first time in small series in a limited number of vehicles," said Mercedes. The manufacturer leaves it open whether this means testing on the road or actually sold vehicles.
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A capital stake in Factorial is also planned. This also gives Mercedes the right to send a representative to the Factorial Board of Directors.
"With Factorial as a new partner at our side, we are taking research and development in the field of promising solid-state batteries to the next level. For this we are investing in Factorial with a high double-digit million amount in US dollars." (Mercedes Board Member for Development Markus Schafer)
"At Factorial Energy we look forward to working with Mercedes-Benz, the inventor of the automobile," said Siyu Huang, co-founder and CEO of Factorial Energy. Our cover picture shows Siyu during the Corona-compliant handshake with Mercedes-Benz Development Board Member Schafer.
Solid electrolytes enable a significantly optimized safety of the battery against fires and explosions. The use of lithium metal anodes is also possible. Compared to today’s lithium-ion batteries with graphite electrodes, these offer an energy density that is almost twice as high, writes Mercedes. Overall, the SSB increases the range and reduces loading times.
Factorial Energy has developed solid-state batteries that offer a 20 to 50 percent greater range and increased safety at comparable costs. One of the advantages of the technology is that battery manufacturing systems that exist today can still be used for production. In addition, the technology works at room temperature. In its eCitaro electric city bus, Mercedes is already testing a solid-state battery from Bollore, which, however, has to be kept at 80 degrees in order to function.
More about solid-state batteries: Mercedes eCitaro with 441 kWh solid-state battery already in use
Solid State Battery: 2025 could be a crucial year
The Factorial Electrolyte System Technology (FEST) has already been tested in the form of a 40 ampere-hour cell. A battery researcher questioned on the occasion said at the time that the Factorial cell was safer and perhaps cheaper to manufacture compared to the technology from VW partner QuantumScape and Solid Power. In terms of energy density, fast charging properties and cycle life, Factorial is not necessarily at the top. Hyundai also cooperates with Factorial.
Addendum from December 1st: On the same day as Mercedes, Stellantis announced a cooperation with Factorial. Here, too, equity participation is part of the commitment. Similar to Mercedes, Stellantis wants to introduce the solid-state battery by 2026, as the group did at its EV Day in July 2021 announced.
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