It was recently reported that Skeleton Technologies and the Canadian automotive supplier Martinrea International are cooperating to equip refuse collection vehicles for use in Paris and New York with Skeleton’s ‘SuperBattery’ technology.
Martinrea International develops and produces electric vehicle technologies for heavy-duty commercial vehicles through its subsidiary Effenco. The aim of the agreement with the Estonia-based Skeleton is to electrify fleets of refuse collection vehicles in Europe and North America, starting in New York City and Paris, and later to make the solution developed by both companies available worldwide. In autumn 2022, Shell had already become known as the first major customer for the graphene battery solution. Shell wants to use it to create electrification solutions for mining sites.
The ‘SuperBattery’ was developed together with the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) and is an alternative to lithium-ion batteries. It is based on a patented curved-graphene material and, according to earlier statements by the Estonian company, will be used and tested primarily in electrified vehicles such as buses and trucks as well as in charging infrastructure.
Skeleton is actually known for its supercapacitors, but is in parallel fine-tuning this novel combination of battery and capacitor technology, which links both technology paths and is to be marketed under the name “SuperBattery”. In short, the hybrid storage units will combine the advantages of lithium-ion batteries (high energy density) with the advantages of ultracapacitors (high performance, long service life). According to Skeleton Technologies, the “SuperBattery” can be charged in 90 seconds, has 50,000 life cycles, is free of cobalt, copper and nickel, and is also non-flammable. Mass production is scheduled to begin in 2024.
“We are very excited about the opportunity to work more closely with Skeleton Technologies,” stated Bruce Johnson, Executive Vice President, Martinrea Innovation Development. “Our two companies have an exceptional level of technical expertise. This allows us to develop innovative solutions for our customers’ electrification needs.”
“Our SuperBattery is specifically designed to decarbonize sectors and industries whose energy, safety and efficiency requirements cannot be met by other battery technologies. We are therefore very pleased to be working with Martinrea to make a significant contribution to reducing CO2 emissions and improving the energy efficiency of refuse collection vehicles in New York City and Paris,” said Taavi Madiberk, CEO and co-founder of Skeleton Technologies.
The company does not disclose details about the roll-out of the vehicles in Paris and New York – neither about the number of vehicles, nor about the model types or the exact schedule. It was said, however, that the ‘SuperBattery’ will be supplied from Saxony. Skeleton’s existing production plant is located in Großröhrsdorf. In 2024, the company also plans to open what it describes as the “world’s largest supercapacitor factory” in Markranstädt near Leipzig.