UK-based Sodium-ion battery maker Faradion Ltd has recently announced that it is actively exploring having a manufacturing presence in India for its batteries for diversified applications. Sodium-ion battery (NiB) is a type of rechargeable battery analogous to the lithium-ion battery but using sodium ions (Na+) as the charge carriers.

Founded in 2011, Faradion had recently won its first order from ICM Australia, is seeking to push its Sodium-ion batteries over Lithium-ion batteries citing "exceptional superiority" and play a significant part in revolutionising automobile/mobility, storage and mobile sectors across the world.

"India is one of the largest markets for mobile devices across the world. Recently, the country has also demonstrated significant progress in the adoption of EV (Electric Vehicle) technology, making it a priority market for Faradion," the company said in a statement.

Internal data of Faradion has shown that sodium-ion batteries can be safely charged to 100 % of its rated capacity in just under 20 min. This significantly contrasts with the case of lithium-ion batteries (using conventional graphite anodes), which cannot be charged fast, as fast charging of lithium-ion batteries can often lead to explosions due to ‘lithium plating’ (a condition where the lithium-ions precipitate as lithium metal on the anode during fast charging instead of being safely inserted into the anode). In this manner, lithium plating can cause internal short-circuits in a battery leading to explosions.

Further, as the world seeks out alternatives to China-dependent Lithium-ion batteries, Faradion's Sodium-ion based technology offers a promising solution, it claimed.

"In line with this, Faradion is actively exploring manufacturing presence in India for its Sodium-ion batteries for diversified applications," the company said in a press release.

Faradion CEO James Quinn said Australasia is the next logical region for the company given the market conditions.

"Faradion is accelerating large scale industrialisation of its safe, low cost, Sodium-ion energy storage technology. After Australia, we foresee India as our next priority big market, given the huge growth in mobile devices and a bigger electric mobility market waiting to grow rapidly," he said.

Notably, storing and transporting lithium-ion batteries requires observing increased safety rules and is subject to strict regulations. Lithium batteries warrant extra safety provisions because, unlike other hazardous materials, lithium batteries contain both a chemical and an electrical hazard. To date, the best known way to handle lithium - ion battery cells is to avoid any storage condition at
or close to 0 Volts by ensuring that immediately upon manufacture , the lithium - ion battery is conditioned by a process involving at least two or three charge/discharge cycles , followed by a final charge to at least around 40% stage - of - charge .And here's where Faradion has got an edge as the companyy has patented the concept of transporting sodium-ion cells in the shorted state (at 0 V), effectively eliminating any risks from commercial transport of such cells.

~ With inputs from PTI

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