The automotive industry continues to be a hotbed of innovation, with activity driven by the need for increased electrode density, faster cycle times and improving the battery’s lifespan, and growing importance of technologies such as graphene enhanced lithium-sulphur battery and graphene enhanced polymer battery. In the last three years alone, there have been over 1.2 million patents filed and granted in the automotive industry, according to GlobalData’s report on Environmental sustainability in Automotive: Graphene batteries.
However, not all innovations are equal and nor do they follow a constant upward trend. Instead, their evolution takes the form of an S-shaped curve that reflects their typical lifecycle from early emergence to accelerating adoption, before finally stabilising and reaching maturity.
Identifying where a particular innovation is on this journey, especially those that are in the emerging and accelerating stages, is essential for understanding their current level of adoption and the likely future trajectory and impact they will have.
290+ innovations will shape the automotive industry
According to GlobalData’s Technology Foresights, which plots the S-curve for the automotive industry using innovation intensity models built on over 619,000 patents, there are 290+ innovation areas that will shape the future of the industry.
Within the emerging innovation stage, EV discharge prediction, fuel cell ion exchange membranes, and hydrogen ICE fuel tanks are disruptive technologies that are in the early stages of application and should be tracked closely. V2G smart metering, silicon-air batteries, and zeolites for exhaust filtering are some of the accelerating innovation areas, where adoption has been steadily increasing. Among maturing innovation areas are HEV propulsion systems and wind-powered vehicles, which are now well established in the industry.
Innovation S-curve for environmental sustainability in the automotive industry
Graphene batteries is a key innovation area in environmental sustainability
Graphene batteries are an innovative technology that facilitates better electrode density and quicker cycle times, along with the ability to hold the charge longer thus enhancing the battery's lifespan.
GlobalData’s analysis also uncovers the companies at the forefront of each innovation area and assesses the potential reach and impact of their patenting activity across different applications and geographies. According to GlobalData, there are 10+ companies, spanning technology vendors, established automotive companies, and up-and-coming start-ups engaged in the development and application of graphene batteries.
Key players in graphene batteries – a disruptive innovation in the automotive industry
‘Application diversity’ measures the number of different applications identified for each relevant patent and broadly splits companies into either ‘niche’ or ‘diversified’ innovators.
‘Geographic reach’ refers to the number of different countries each relevant patent is registered in and reflects the breadth of geographic application intended, ranging from ‘global’ to ‘local’.
Patent volumes related to graphene batteries
|Company||Total patents (2010 - 2021)||Premium intelligence on the world's largest companies|
|Toray Industries||95||Unlock company profile|
|LG||48||Unlock company profile|
|PPG Industries||37||Unlock company profile|
|Semiconductor Energy Laboratory||30||Unlock company profile|
|Albemarle||22||Unlock company profile|
|Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft zur Forderung der Angewandten Forschung||20||Unlock company profile|
|Global Graphene Group||16||Unlock company profile|
|Toyota Motor||15||Unlock company profile|
|Nanotek Instruments||15||Unlock company profile|
|Sekisui Chemical||14||Unlock company profile|
|NEC||14||Unlock company profile|
|Showa Denko||11||Unlock company profile|
|Samsung SDI||10||Unlock company profile|
|NanoXplore||9||Unlock company profile|
|Grafoid||7||Unlock company profile|
|Hon Hai Precision Industry||7||Unlock company profile|
|Saudi Arabian Oil||6||Unlock company profile|
|Hangzhou Gaoxi Technology||5||Unlock company profile|
Source: GlobalData Patent Analytics
Toray Industries is a key player in the graphene batteries innovation area. The company has successfully developed an ultra-thin graphene dispersion solution with excellent fluidity, electrical conductivity, and thermal conductivity. It has developed a technology that uses cheap graphite materials to make very thin, high-quality graphene. LG, PPG Industries and Semiconductor Energy Laboratory are some of the other key players in the innovation area.
To further understand how environmental sustainability is disrupting the automotive industry, access GlobalData’s latest thematic research report on Automotive.