Around a hundred people gathered at a special event organised by Nexeon and the Embassy of Japan in London yesterday. The event, titled “Battery Innovation – Past, Present and Future”, reviewed some of the exciting progress that has been made in the development of batteries, especially rechargeables, and looked ahead to an exciting future in electric vehicles, consumer electronics and many other applications.
In a keynote address, Nishi-san, former Snr. VP at Sony Corporation and now consultant to Nexeon, gave a chronology of battery developments from the ‘Baghdad Battery’ of 2000 years ago to the latest thinking in achieving high performance from cells. Research is very active, noted Nishi-san, and British and Japanese corporations and academics are at the forefront of progress.
Dr Allan Paterson, Chief Electrochemist at Johnson Matthey, also gave an overview of the many technologies that his company is developing, including battery systems for supercars and more mainstream vehicles.
Dr Paul Atherton educated and entertained delegates with some personal reflections on what it takes to be successful as an entrepreneur (it’s really hard and takes lots of ability matched with equal amounts of luck), and this led to some interesting questions from the floor about the importance of IP and the role of the State.
The event also celebrated the award this year of the Charles Stark Draper Prize to Nishi-san for his contribution to society.