REF 2021 Impact Case Study: Improving lithium-ion batteries for electric vehicles through mathematical modelling


Description of impact

Foster has equipped industry with enhanced theoretical understanding and modelling capabilities that, in the words of [text removed for publication] (S1), have provided "significant economic benefit" by decreasing "overall development cost" of manufacturing battery modules for electric vehicles (EVs). The lithium-ion battery (LIB) industry is currently worth USD40 billion per year, predicted to be USD92 billion per year by 2024. The impact has primarily been realised via changing practices at GM who are increasing their investment in LIBs to >USD27 billion and plan to produce and sell >1,000,000 EVs in 2025.
Foster's work contributes to increased rates of adoption of EVs by enhancing commercial viability of the LIB packs which comprise ~40% of the cost of the EV. These batteries are longer-lasting, safer, charge more quickly, and can be driven further between recharges. This is significant in the context of policies to ban the sale of combustion engines across large portions of the world over coming decades (e.g., UK Road to Zero policy). It will make a major contribution towards societal goals to reduce CO2, NOx and particulate emissions mitigating climate change and reducing the effects of other pollutants on human health.
Impact statusOpen
Impact date2016


  • REF2021