Is an unknown Chinese company behind the 150 kWh battery?
"Nio Day" wasn't just because of the presentation of the ET7 an event with ranges of up to 1,000 kilometers. The solid-state battery with 150 kWh used for this aroused our interest.
According to initial reports, CATL should deliver these batteries. However, Chinese media are now pointing to another company: Solid State Lion. If you've never heard of this company, you are not alone.
The information comes from a Twitter user named Moneyball with a tweet on January 13th. According to this, Solid State Lion is a company from the environment of the China Academy of Science:
We tried to verify the information. However, the company's website is apparently out of date; the only email address listed there is no longer working. After all, there is an English version of the website.
The website confirms that Solid State Lion is affiliated with the Institute of Physics of the Chinese Academy of Sciences. After that, Solid State Lion was founded in 2016. The Physics Institute then granted the company the "core rights to the intellectual property of solid-state batteries" in 2017. The full company name is Beijing WeLion New Energy Technology. Company founder Professor Chen Liquan has been working with lithium-ion conductors since 1977.
Solid State Lion claims to have 17 patents on solid-state batteries. The patents deal, among other things, with the development of solid electrolyte materials, a key element in solid-state technology. It is about negative electrodes made of lithium metal composite materials, "positive and negative materials with high energy density" (probably cathodes and anodes) and a solid-state battery with high energy density.
When you consider that US battery manufacturer QuantumScape has more than 80 patents and more than 100 patent applications for solid-state batteries, Solid State Lion's 17 patents are not a very impressive number. But in the end it comes down to which patents are involved. A solid electrolyte that was reliable and easy to manufacture would be a real game changer and might require several patents.
Picture gallery: Nio ET7 (2022)
It is also still unclear whether the production capacity will be sufficient: If Nio wants to buy the batteries from Solid State Lion, the company should also be able to produce enough batteries. The Chinese company claims to have "more than two production sites", but of course that doesn't mean a lot.
If things are right with Solid State Lion, then there might be a third strong player that can build solid-state batteries alongside QuantumScape and the other US manufacturer, Solid Power. Why haven't we heard of the company before? Maybe because we get little information from the Middle Kingdom here in the West.
More about solid-state batteries: Solid Power builds multilayer solid-state batteries with 20 ampere hours
Nio announces solid-state battery with 150 kWh
We will try to contact Nio, but we have little hope that we can be told anything about it. Because if other automakers find out where Nio wants to get its solid-state batteries from, they may try to buy the batteries themselves at a slightly higher price. Maybe the Solid State Lion website is so discreet and outdated on purpose …
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