US DOE Awards General Motors $9.1M in Award Funds, Seeks Solid State Battery R&D

The US Department of Energy (DOE) awarded General Motors (GM) a total of $9.1 million as part of its 2019 fiscal year award funds – $2 million of which is explicitly related to research and development for solid-state batteries. Specifically, $1 million is for the “fundamental understanding of interfacial phenomena in solid-state batteries” with the other $1 million going towards research into “hot pressing of reinforced all-solid-state batteries with sulfide glass electrolyte.” According to a 2014 study, sulfide glass electrolyte performed very well in battery test cycles at room temperature and could be a key material to commercializing solid-state batteries. The remainder of the grant money from the DOE will go toward research of a “low-mass and high-efficiency” engine for medium-duty trucks.

The Ford Motor Company received $7.5 million from the DOE that will go toward “next-generation high-efficiency boosted engine development.”

Other organizations, each receiving approximately $1M in funding for research in lithium-metal solid-state batteries, include the University of Maryland, Solid Power Inc, Iowa State University of Science & Technology, the University of Michigan, among others.

In total, the DOE has awarded $59 million to 43 projects for new and innovative advanced vehicle technologies research, primarily dealing with electric powertrain components. Other research areas set to receive funding include alternative fuel and mobility services in rural America.

“Vehicles drive our national economy,” said under secretary Menezes. “ At DOE, we support a broad portfolio of technologies, generating the knowledge needed for industry to further develop and commercialize affordable, secure, and reliable transportation systems.”