Last June, CIC energiGUNE took part in the Young Scientist Event organized by Battery 2030+ initiative, where the main challenges for the development of the batteries of the future were discussed.

In the last decades it has been identified that Electric Vehicle (EV) will play an important role towards the energy transition. The greenhouse emissions coming from mobility are huge, thus, moving towards electromobility will allow to significantly mitigate them.

In this regard, the International Energy Agency (IEA) was predicting two different scenarios for EV sales in the coming years, a conservative and an optimistic one. In the first, it was predicted that around 20 million of EV would be sold by 2030, while the most optimistic one, was expecting around 47 million.

Chart developed by CIC energiGUNE, based on IEA information, revealing the two possible scenarios (optimistic and conservative) for EV sales in the world by 2030.

These scenarios were defined taking into consideration the incentive policies recently set by many countries, what undoubtedly forces our mobility industry towards the EV. As an example, EU is banning the sale of 100% combustion vehicles by 2040.

Chart developed by CIC energiGUNE based on public information that reveals the electrification plans of countries, continents and major car manufacturers for 2025, 2030, 2035 and 2040

However, to make this possible, they need to be followed by the automakers leading this goal, which are Stellantis, Citroën, Opel, Renault, Volvo, Mercedes Benz, General Motors, Audi, Ford, Volkswagen and Hyundai among others.

Thus, to achieve the total electrification of our future vehicles, the speeding up of the battery manufacturing industry is of utmost necessity. Currently, the main players on battery manufacturing are Asian (e.g., LG Chem, BYD, Panasonic, CATL…), hence, in order not to be dependent on the Asian market, new gigafactories have been or are planned to be installed in Europe in the coming years.

Chart developed by CIC energiGUNE that shows all the Gigafactories´ plans taking place in Europe (november 2022)

However, still many challenges should be solved in order to work on the batteries of the future.


Under this topic, the 1st of June of 2022, the Young Scientist Event organized by Battery 2030+ initiative took place simultaneously in four different universities (Politecnico di Torino, Uppsala University, Vrije Universiteit Brussel and Warsaw University of Technology) where CIC energiGUNE also took part.

In this event, the Young Scientists gathered were discussing about the challenges ahead the batteries of the future. The conclusions from that event were collected in the Young Scientist Manifesto, which was presented in the General Assembly of Battery 2030+ in Brussels, and in the Nanoinnovation conference in Rome last September.

Chemistry, Critical Raw Materials, Circularity, Industry of batteries, Social Aspects… Among the different points that the Young Scientists identified as particularly important, the necessity of introducing a European battery manufacturing strategy was rapidly highlighted, while cost and safety concerns have to be solved.

Moreover, a better and clear communication between Universities, Research Centres and Industry was required. At the same time, the importance of outreach activities to reach people of different disciplines arose, as it was clearly identified that multidisciplinary teams will be of key importance to develop the batteries of the future.

EU regulation, CRMs, circularity, industry, cooperation, academia, advanced discoveries and electrification: key aspects to take into account when managing batteries´ growth, according to european young scientists.

Regarding the European battery manufacturing strategy, recently the 2006 EU regulatory framework of batteries was revised. New carbon footprint rules, a minimum recycled content, performance and durability criteria, end-of-life management requirements, due diligence obligations, or safety and labelling (e.g., QR for battery passport) requirements were set. These kind of regulations will allow to develop not only batteries with good performance, but also those that will kept the sustainability of the technology. As the batteries of the future will not be those that performs better, but those that are able to keep the performance and sustainability well-balanced.

Artificial Intelligence

Nevertheless, cost and safety are still the major concerns of the EV in our society. One of the key points to reduce the cost of the battery manufacturing and later implementation in the EV, comes across the Artificial Intelligence (AI). It is known that will play an important role in our early future, as it is able to accelerate human discoveries in a 5-10-fold rate increase.

In this regard, under the Battery 2030+ initiative, BIG-MAP project, where  CIC energiGUNE takes part through the FullProfApp tool, already works on AI in order to accelerate the discovery of new materials, electrolyte/electrode interphases or materials’ formulation among others, to boost the cell production and their integration in the EVs.

Digital Twins

Meanwhile, digital twins of manufacturing processes, being a virtual replica of an actual physical and complex system, will also play a significant role on the better understanding and optimization of physical parameters and processes, predict, and understand malfunctions of the equipment’s. Specifically, digital twins of the EV, will allow to predict why and how problems such as breakdowns occur, or will analyse the overall vehicle performance allowing to deliver a personalized service to the customer.

Electrode processing

Another aspect on battery manufacturing that will reduce the cost of batteries and make them more sustainable is focused on the electrode processing. The necessity of moving from toxic organic solvents towards aqueous or solvent-free processing has become of major importance. As it will allow to reduce the energy consumption along the battery manufacturing and to move towards more sustainable processes. Among different active projects on this topic, GIGAGREEN was recently granted by the EU commission, where CIC energiGUNE leads the wet and dry processing pathways development activities.


One of the main points discussed regarding the improvement on safety was to focus on battery sensoring. Under the Battery 2030+ initiative, different projects such as Sensibat, Spartacus or Instabat are already working on that. BCare, the spin-off of CIC energiGUNE also works to maximise the device performances by diagnosis and prediction of health, and fault identification and analysis by the introduction of sensors in the cells. Furthermore, introducing self-healing processes in batteries, as made in the projects of Hidden or Bat4Ever under Battery 2030+ initiative, can also ensure the fabrication of safer, and longer-lasting batteries.

Communication between Academia and Industry

Despite the challenges across cost and safety, from the perspective of the Young Scientists, we need to improve communication between Academia and Industry. Cooperation  can help to bridge the gap between fundamental scientific research and industry demand, which is of key importance to achieve high-impact battery development. Certainly, industry needs the fundamental insights arising from academic research, while academia would strongly benefit from industrial feedback to guide future research paths.

Multidisciplinary teams

Moreover, in the last and most innovative steps defined towards the batteries of the future, the necessity of gathering researchers from different fields has been identified. Creating multidisciplinary teams for the battery production, research and innovation, and recycling industries could make use of already existing scientific and other human resources from other sectors and provide new innovative perspectives on the field of batteries, covering the knowledge along the whole battery value chain.

Chart developed by CIC energiGUNE that shows the different skills necessary for the battery industry. From left to right: processes, operations and digitalization; management; social and environmental impact; technology and R&D; and Integration & applicat


The Young Scientist Event was organized with the aim of providing the next generation of battery scientists the opportunity to be proactive and demonstrate how they can be a credible and interesting interlocutor for the European community and for planning the future on batteries’ field. Furthermore, it is of crucial importance to boost Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics (STEM) careers in our young society to engage them towards battery industry. Seminars, workshops, or science outreach activities would help to encourage young researchers to enter the field of energy storage.

We should not forget that the efforts made today will be the breakthroughs of the future.

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