Ep 7 - Our friends electric: Brill Power and the coming battery revolution
What could be more familiar than the humble electric battery? They've been around for years, factories knock them out regular as clockwork and we're all familiar with them, aren't we? Well think again. Ubiquitous in mobile phones and personal electronics, the rapid and irreversible move to electric cars, transportation and energy storage is sending our demand for batteries soaring. And this is bringing as many new challenges as it is opportunities. We need lots of better, longer-lasting and greener batteries - and we need them soon. Here in the UK we've made innovation in battery technology one of the key priorities of our industrial strategy. The UK government has even founded a new independent institute - The Faraday Institution on the Harwell Campus - to spearhead this work. And through its Faraday Challenge innovation program, where better to look for new ideas than our universities. Which is where we bumped into Brill Power, a spin-out fresh from the Engineering Department of Oxford University, looking to bring about a revolution in battery technology. We spoke to Brill Power's Carolyn Hicks and Christoph Birkl, and this hour-long conversation is one of most inspiring episodes of the podcast we've ever done. We guarantee one thing: you'll never look at the humble battery in the same way again...and you may be more than a little interested in getting involved in a new industrial revolution!