Gloucester based AIS secures Advanced Propulsion Centre funding to develop battery testing capability

AIS APC funding

AIS Ltd (formerly Advanced Insulation), the award-winning Gloucester manufacturer  of insulation, passive fire protection, buoyancy and cable protection systems. has secured funding from the Advanced Propulsion Centre (APC) in Coventry to support Jaguar Land Rover in the design of the company’s next generation battery, on a project called ASTIR – ‘Advanced Technology into Reality’. This project, as part of a consortium of partners (including Siemens, AVL, and Warwick University), will provide matched funding for AIS to develop anti-propagation materials and products, and to grow its testing capability and facility. Over the coming months, AIS will be installing a containerised test facility that will greatly increase the company’s testing capacity and consequently, the support we are able to offer our customers.

The challenge manufacturers of lithium lion batteries face is, if abused, the batteries can undergo ‘thermal runaway’; a fast, violent, and self-accelerating chemical reaction which results in a release of gas and heat, causing temperatures to soar up to 1300°C. This challenge offers AIS the opportunity to capitalise on its passive fire protection and product development expertise and diversify into an emerging and constantly expanding market.

There is a huge gap in the market for a company with testing capability combined with passive fire protection knowledge and associated product development. Providing battery testing during the development of our products gives AIS opportunity to learn about our customer’s challenges and create products that resolve these issues. AIS Research and Development Manager, Simon Jones, said.

“The combination of materials development with testing has proven to be very powerful.  It allows a rapid iteration of ideas and solutions, delivering progress that may previously have taken months in only a few weeks.”

In July, AIS Ltd revealed that was it had changed its name to  Advanced Innergy Solutions (AIS) to highlight the innovative nature of its products and solutions for the energy sector.

Over the last few years, AIS has broadened its products and services beyond insulation. Bringing together all products and solutions under one corporate name—‘Advanced Innergy Solutions’ (AIS), will make it easier to showcase all solutions and products under one umbrella brand.

In the last three years, AIS has significantly increased its market share in new energy markets – offshore wind and more recently automotive. The new name and branding is already enabling the company to continue with its diversification plans.

Formed in 2013 to help the automotive industry meet the challenges of decarbonisation identified by the Automotive Council, the Advanced Propulsion Centre in Coventry has a unique relationship with the automotive industry, and the political and academic landscape means collaboratively it can drive the right commercial and strategic outcomes for the benefit of the UK. Its bridging position, between the industry and the innovation means it can influence up and down the ecosystem taking a science superpower to an industrial superpower.

So far the company has supported a range of companies and technology types, creating innovations that can reduce emissions in all kinds of automotive vehicles. These have had a huge impact on the journey towards a net-zero automotive future and the UK’s economy through new jobs and facilities.