Learnings from PlugVolt 2023

By Dr. Michelle Tokarz, Ph.D., VP of Partnerships & Innovation

I recently attended the PlugVolt Battery Seminar 2023 and came away with many insights. Perhaps the biggest difference from the previous year is the passage of the Inflation Reduction Act and all of the activities surrounding that legislation. It was noted that there were only a handful of EV models to choose from during PlugVolt 2022, while there are over 450 EV models this year. Automakers are becoming very familiar with this legislation and finding ways to work with it.  

Representatives from OEMs and battery materials companies were present and talked about their products. One overarching theme was that of safety. Research on thermal runaway events has been extensive and seems to pervade all work on EV’s and lithium-ion batteries. Progress is being made in minimizing this issue. 

Additionally, range was discussed, but not so much about wanting to be able to drive further on a single charge. The desire is for a reliable number that consumers can count on for range. Currently, there are so many factors that affect range, from number of passengers, to load, to charger availability, to normal variability from vehicle to vehicle. Consumers want to be able to plan their driving (and charging) in a more reliable, consistent way.  

In addition to some talk about cathode research, there were conversations about commercialization of silicon anode material. Players in the lithium-ion battery market see the tremendous value in silicon and are actively involved in its commercialization. They certainly support and encourage silicon anode development. It’s exciting to have our Endurion being a part of this cutting-edge technology. 

Overall, it was a good networking opportunity, and we expect some fruitful follow-up conversations to occur because of our participation in PlugVolt. The parties present at this conference were definitely “all in” on electrification and silicon has a significant part to play in this effort. Our Endurion program is being recognized as a major player in this effort. 

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