LONDON -- A group of seven British organizations including battery materials firm Johnson Matthey, start-up Britishvolt and Oxford University have formed a consortium to develop solid-state batteries for electric vehicles.
The consortium will build a facility to develop prototypes and technologies for the mass production of solid-state batteries.
It also includes the government-funded Faraday Institution, which aims to help UK businesses develop and manufacture EV batteries.
"Delivering enhanced range and safety...will be a key driver for battery electric vehicle adoption, supporting the transition to a net zero future," Christian Gunther, head of battery materials at Johnson Matthey, said in a statement on Thursday.
Automakers are racing to develop EVs amid tightening CO2 emission standards in Europe and China and currently use lithium-ion batteries which consist of a liquid or gel-form electrolyte.
A number of manufacturers, including Ford and BMW, are researching or investing in solid-state battery technology, which should be able to store more energy -- meaning greater driving range -- and prove safer due to a lack of flammable components.
Britishvolt plans to build a battery factory in northern England that should go into operation in 2023.
The plant will be built in three phases and in the last of these, due for completion by 2027, the company aims to produce solid-state batteries.
Earlier this week Britishvolt and mining giant Glencore signed a long-term deal for the supply of cobalt. Glencore also bought an undisclosed stake in the Britishvolt.