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2015-02-26

UK Government launch 10m prize for battery innovation

The UK government is launching a 10m prize for innovative battery designs that could power the next generation of ultra-low emission vehicles (ULEVs).
Most electric cars and vans can travel about 100 miles before they need to recharge. Increasing this range would see zero-emission technologies become a fully fledged rival to petrol and diesel vehicles. Advances in batteries would be of huge benefit to renewable-energy technologies by storing electricity produced by wind turbines or solar panels for use at peak times.
Announcing the prize on Friday, chief secretary to the Treasury Danny Alexander said: "The challenge is to draw on the UK's world-class scientific research and develop a battery which is at the cutting edge of innovation, commercially viable and ready to be put into production.
"The competition will be open to all UK research establishments, working together with vehicle manufacturers based over here in the UK."
The competition will open for bids in April, with a winner announced in the summer. The prize will be awarded to a single, UK-based consortium that successfully demonstrates an idea for a commercially viable battery pack, ready for production and integration into cars and other road vehicles.
The government is investing 500m over the next parliament to accelerate the development of ULEVs and is keen to develop the UK as a global leader in developing green transport technology.
Transport campaigner Quentin Willson, who has been involved in designing the 10m prize, said: "The UK should lead the world in cutting-edge EV battery technology and this initiative will help create jobs, establish a whole new industry and boost GDP. I totally support this prize for the best in UK battery innovation."