In the field of critical materials, this is a combination of new research projects (15 of them will receive grants from US DoE), new capacities (Lynas rare earth separation project in Texas)... and a real challenge ahead of us in terms of future availability (very interesting review by Mining.com). So as proposed by Financial Times, what about learning from the race to vaccines against COViD and be quicker on developing the full supply chain for electric vehicles?
Further on the scientific front with a variety of innovations such as better energy density and longer cycle life for sodium ion batteries at Hydro Quebec, new design for zinc air batteries at University of Münster, invisible solar panels at Incheon University, new 2D materials that could be upscaled without solvents or water at Rice University, practical guidelines from Chalmers to better and safer operate lithium metal batteries, doubling capacity of solid state batteries at Tokyo and Tohoku Universities ... and progress towards faster Quantum Computers at Berkeley.
On the sustainability front, we picked 4 examples: a review of steady progress on the full chain of collecting, recycling and reusing composites and carbon fibers involving Anmet, AOC and Suez in Europe by Composites World, a sizeable reduction of water consumption for production of castor as raw material for bio polymers by the Pragati initiative in India involving BASF and Arkéma, a great transition project from coal to green hydrogen in Hamburg thanks to cooperation between MHI, Shell, Wärme Hamburg and Vattenfall. And an interesting perspective proposed by Research center CSIRO that Australia could boost its GDP by $1 billion per annum by boosting its recycling capacities by 5%.
Finally 12 of our great Start Up Alumni are also in the news this month with awards (Safi Organics - Kenya), fundings (Graphen MG - Australia, UbiQd - USA), international expansion (Kebotix - USA), new applications (Vaporsens - USA), new cooperations with major customer (BComp - Switzerland, FredSense - Canada, Ramlab - Netherlands), participation to international event (Woodoo - France) or statutory press coverage (Carbios - France, Opus 12 - USA, Vartega - USA).
As always, we hope that you enjoy the reading.
Victoire de Margerie & Philippe Varin
GreenCar Congress, January 21st: DoE awards 50M$ to 15 projects to advance critical materials innovations
BASF News, January 29th: Further progress of Pragati Initiative in India (involving among others Arkéma and BASF) with resulting and sizeable reduction of water consumption for production of castor as raw material for bio polymers.
GreenTechMedia, January 29th: German coal plant transitioning to green hydrogen thanks to MHI