Lightening the Co2 load on the road

MEP Technologies gets green light to develop new zero emission battery enclosure for road freight sector

We’re excited to announce that we’ve been given the green light on a government funded collaborative project, focusing on new battery technology for HGVs. The project focuses on producing a lightweight, fire-safe battery enclosure for zero emission trucks, which addresses current road freight sector concerns regarding range/payload and lithium-ion battery safety. The venture comes as part of a £20 million zero emission road freight trial, funded by the Innovate UK for the Department for Transport, which aims to support the uptake of zero emission trucks.

The partnership has secured nearly £250,000 of funding for the nine-month project, which will be driven by Composites Evolution Ltd in collaboration with MEP Technologies, alongside the University of Wolverhampton’s School of Engineering, and Carr Reinforcements Ltd. Together, a new high-temperature composite material suitable for large battery enclosures for electric freight vehicles will be developed. The resulting battery pack will be lighter and safer than current solutions, and will be a leap forward in zero-emissions battery technology once completed, paving the road for a carbon-neutral future for the logistics sector.

Stuart Morrison, Managing Director of MEP Technologies said “MEP Technologies will play an important role in furthering the development of a working prototype battery for commercial use.

“We will be responsible firstly for collecting market research from existing and potential future customers, informing a detailed performance plan which will then be shared with our collaborators.

“In the later stages of the project, we will design, develop, prototype and test a working battery module, which will be capable of detecting and supressing a thermal event – which is the industry term for a fire. Should this occur, our Battery Management System (BMS) will react by flooding the battery segment to make safe and therefore mitigate a thermal runaway event. The battery enclosure, which is being developed by our collaborators, should be capable of containing the event and withstanding the initial fire and thermal stress.”

The success of the project could inform additional uses for the new technology besides freight usage. Potential other applications for the system include aerial vehicles, specialised ground vehicles (bomb disposal) and utility service vehicles. 

The project is set to be complete by March 2022.

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