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January 25, 2019

VW ploughs US$10m into Forge Nano battery research

Volkswagen is investing US$10m in start-up, Forge Nano with a view to reinforcing its specialist knowledge in the field of battery research.

By Rhodri Morgan

Volkswagen is investing US$10m in start-up, Forge Nano with a view to reinforcing its specialist knowledge in the field of battery research.

Forge Nano is investigating a material coating technology which could improve the performance of battery materials. As a partner, Volkswagen will provide support for industrial trials of this technology, with the transaction still subject to approval by authorities.

Volkswagen has been collaborating with Forge Nano on advanced battery material research since 2014. The start-up with headquarters in Louisville, Colorado, is investigating processes for scaling atomic layer deposition (ALD) to create new core-shell materials, especially for battery applications.

ALD is a chemical process for applying atomic scale coatings one atom at a time. With its specific ALD technology, Forge Nano aims to boost energy density of vehicle battery cells. For example, a higher energy density would have positive effects on the range of electric vehicles.

The Volkswagen Group intends to offer more than 50 battery-electric models by 2025, accounting for around a fifth of its model portfolio.

Volkswagen is cooperating with battery cell suppliers and developing its own know-how in battery research. This includes targeted venture investments.

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