Wacker Chemie AG is intensifying its research activities on silicon-based materials for high-performance batteries by taking a holding in Nexeon Ltd. The Munich-based chemical company announced that it is acquiring a 25 percent stake in the UK specialist for new battery materials. WACKER and Nexeon have agreed not to disclose the purchase price. Nexeon develops, produces and sells silicon-based anode materials that significantly enhance the performance of lithium-ion batteries. WACKER has conducted research in this area since 2010 and has cooperated with Nexeon already in 2013.
“Today’s agreement is a key step in strengthening our activities in silicon-based anode materials for next-generation batteries by putting them on an even broader base,” said Christian Hartel, responsible for R&D on WACKER’s Executive Board. “On the one hand, it means we can intensify and further develop WACKER’s own successful research in this field. On the other hand, this stake reinforces our cooperation with Nexeon as we jointly develop supplementary material strategies. WACKER is ideally positioned to develop and produce these innovative materials, given our decades of in-depth expertise in silicon chemistry.”
“At Nexeon, we greatly look forward to intensifying our successful cooperation with WACKER,” said Scott Brown, Nexeon CEO. “We are a leader in developing silicon materials to replace the carbon anode in lithium-ion batteries. With WACKER at our side, we have a strong partner supporting us as we move forward with product development and commercialization.”
High-performance lithium-ion batteries are vital for applications in mobile devices, such as smart phones and tablets, and in electric vehicles. Silicon materials have the highest known storage capacity for lithium ions, which means they can significantly improve the energy density and performance of such batteries.