Official starting signal for FAB-SH
Minister President Daniel Günther hands over funding notification for 3.2 million euros for the establishment of the research center in Itzehoe
The handover of the funding decision by Minister President Daniel Günther in Itzehoe is the official kick-off for the establishment of the Research Center for Applied Battery Technology Schleswig-Holstein (FAB-SH). The research center will be located in a former logistics building in close proximity to Fraunhofer ISIT. On 3400 m² of laboratory and office space, starting in 2023, about 30 employees will work on the further development of battery storage systems for maritime, stationary or medical applications, among other things. Another research focus will be on the development of new production technologies for battery storage systems. Architects and planners are currently being commissioned for the building conversion.
The state's funding decision of 3.2 million euros applies to the first project phase, the purchase of the building. Preparations for the second project funding, the conversion and equipping of the building, are already underway. The state had already promised further funding of 2.3 million euros.
Minister President Daniel Günther praised the project and said, "Schleswig-Holstein is finally moving up into the premier league of battery research. For our ambitions as an energy transition pioneer, it is only logical to also have excellent battery research and industry in the state. With this new research center, ISIT will be the driving force. It will generate important innovations and bring a lot of know-how to the state. Itzehoe will thus become even more visible, more important and more powerful as a location for innovative storage technology."
In addition to the state, the city of Itzehoe, the district of Steinburg, the federal government and the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft are also participating in the financing of the project.
The FAB-SH is expected to create about 30 jobs for highly qualified employees such as scientists and engineers as well as for technical personnel with an educational background, such as chemical and technical assistants, mechanics and electronics technicians. In addition, there will be up to 20 students.
The establishment of the research center had become necessary because Fraunhofer ISIT has been able to acquire numerous development projects on energy storage topics in recent years and the laboratory and office space is already being used to capacity. In addition, the plant technology at Fraunhofer ISIT has to be modernized in parts in order to be able to adequately process the new projects.
The FAB-SH strives for a prominent position in the national and international research competition. The basis for this already exists at ISIT. With the dry coating of electrodes and an ISIT-own separator technology, production processes have been developed and patented which represent a unique position of ISIT. In the field of cell technology, ISIT can point to the development of high-performance cells and high-temperature accumulators, among other things, whose performance is in the top range of the current cell generation. The planned research center will enable accelerated and optimized industrialization of these and other battery technologies.
"A large number of institutions and companies in Schleswig-Holstein are involved with aspects of energy storage technology. We will have laboratories ready for them so that we can carry out joint projects with them at the Itzehoe site," said the future head of FAB-SH Dr. Andreas Würsig.
The starting point for the idea of the FAB-SH was Schleswig-Holstein's application for the Research Manufacturing Battery Cell (FFB) in recent years, which was coordinated by Fraunhofer ISIT. It has brought about lasting success for the state. Even though Münster was ultimately awarded the contract in 2019, Schleswig-Holstein and especially Fraunhofer ISIT were able to score a major win with the application. "The state has identified and efficiently bundled its competencies in the field of storage technologies, so that excellent conditions have also been created for further projects such as FAB-SH," ISIT Director Prof. Axel Müller-Groeling is pleased to say. The topic portfolio of the FAB-SH is complementary to the activities in Münster, and the scientists will cooperate constructively with the FFB in Münster.
In the long term, the FAB-SH initiators hope that the research center, together with existing companies in the field of battery cell production such as CUSTOMCELLS or Alzner Battery, will form the core of an energy storage innovation park in Itzehoe.