Altech has executed a JV agreement to commercialise Fraunhofer IKTS’ CERENERGY® sodium alumina solid state battery technology by constructing a 100 megawatt hour battery plant.

IKTS uses ceramic solid state technology, common table salt and nickel to manufacture fire and explosion-proof batteries with a life span of more than 15 years, which is up to twice the lifespan of lithium-ion batteries, and the capability of operating in extreme cold and desert climates.

Importantly, the CERENERGY®  batteries do not use any lithium, cobalt, graphite or copper, which eliminates exposure to critical metal prices and supply chain concerns.

Small wonder then that Altech Chemicals (ASX:ATC) believes that CERENERGY®  batteries are the game-changing grid storage alternative to lithium-ion batteries, certainly enough to execute a joint venture Shareholders’ Agreement with IKTS to commercialise a 100MWh project on Altech’s land in Schwarze Pumpe, Germany.

Altech, together with associated entity Altech Advanced Materials AG, will own 75% and free carry IKTS’ 25% stake in the project, which will specifically focus on the grid energy storage market which is expected to grow by 28% compound annual growth rate in the coming decades.

The proposed plant will produce 10,000 10KWh sodium alumina solid state  battery modules per annum, each of which is expected to sell for between €7,000 and €9,000, at a production cost about 40% to 50% cheaper than lithium-ion batteries.

Planning for the Bankable Feasibility Study required for the commercialisation process is now underway, with the longer-term vision being for the JV to construct additional production trains, or even Gigawatt-scale battery facilities, once the first production train is completed.



IKTS’ CERENERGY® batteries are the result of over eight years of development, as well as  €35m spent on R&D and €25m on the operating pilot plant, all by IKTS.

The batteries have been successfully tested in stationary battery modules, including extensive performance testing in Germany, and are in the final phase of product testing.

CERENERGY® modules are designed to fit in racks housed in sea containers that can be deployed for grid storage.

The use of a solid state electrolyte addresses the use of flammable liquid electrolyte or plastic separators in lithium-ion batteries, and is also suitable for areas subject to flooding, they do not react with water.

Additionally, the batteries can operate at temperatures ranging from -20 degrees to +60 degrees centigrade, in contrast to lithium-ion batteries, which typically have a very narrow operating range.

Energy capacity is comparable to lithium iron phosphate (LFP) batteries, though they do require charge times averaging between four to six hours, making CERENERGY® suitable for grid storage or the long-duration energy sector, where very high power in a short period (like high-power EVs) is not required.


This article was developed in collaboration with Altech Chemicals, a Stockhead advertiser at the time of publishing.

This article does not constitute financial product advice. You should consider obtaining independent advice before making any financial decisions.