Nitin Gadkari – ISRO – ARAI – Li-Ion Battery

The whole PLAN of Nitin Gadkari is as complicated and unrelated with each other as the title… will he pull it off or will it be another false dawn?

The drive to indigenously develop lithium ion battery technology for automotive applications in India is on track and will be ready as early as mid-2017, say ARAI officials.

Local development of expensive lithium ion battery… technology, specifically for automotive applications, got a boost when last year Nitin Gadkari, Union Minister for Road Transport & Highways, and his team of advisors initiated discussions with the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO).

ISRO is known to have access to lithium ion technology for space applications. ISRO and ARAI (Automotive Research Association of India) have been working on a joint project undertaken to develop lithium ion technology capability indigenously.

ISRO is learnt to have delivered a cell-level (lithium-ion) prototype to ARAI, which was being tested for the automotive duty cycles at the latter’s facility in Pune.

The automotive research authority has compiled a report with its inputs on suitable specifications required for automotive applications. These inputs are now shared with ISRO.

The next step would be to reduce the specifications, use indigenously developed materials and also to make it cost effective. About components that are used in the lithium ion batteries such as chemistry, packaging and other specifications related to energy density, are being worked upon.

ARAI expects to have the lithium ion cells to run final prototype testing and validation processes by end of December-2016. This clearly signals the readiness of the technology for automotive industry applications as early as the Q2 CY2017.

THEN COMES THE PROBLEM….ARAI will then ask other companies to develop batteries as per ISRO/ARAI specs. Usually its the other way around and companies prefer to develop batteries/vehicles and ARAI is supposed to test it.

Now they have put the cart before the horse… maybe it will work… just like the demonetization is working now… in a half baked manner 😉

We can hope and pray that some battery companies like Exide Industries, Amara Raja Batteries, HBL Power Systems, Base Corporation agree and make the local Li-Ion versions. But these companies will only agree if there are enough numbers for them to take the effort. Its kind of like what comes first the egg or the hen?

Hopefully some companies like Tork & Ather can take it up…



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