Indian Oil Corporation Ltd (IOCL) has formed a joint venture
with a startup from Israel, Phinergy to develop hybrid Lithium-ion and Aluminium-air/
Zinc-air battery systems with a new company IOC Phinergy Pvt Ltd in March.
The JV was announced in the presence of Dharmendra Pradhan, Minister
of Petroleum and Natural Gas (MoP&NG) & Steel and the Dr Yuval
Steinitz, Minister of Energy, Israel. Ministry secretaries of India and Israel,
ambassadors and leaderships from various automakers were also present during
The JV aims to manufacture Aluminium-Air systems in India to
boost India's flagship programme – ‘Make in India’ and recycle used Aluminium
to strengthen India's energy security. The new Indo-Israeli JV also intends to
develop fuel cells and indigenous hydrogen storage solutions for promoting
green mobility. In a significant boost to India's pursuit of e-mobility, two of
the leading automotive manufactures in India- Maruti Suzuki and Ashok Leyland
signed a Letter of Intent (LOI) with the newly incorporated JV IOC Phinergy
Speaking on occasion, Pradhan said, “The fruition of the
vision of our Prime Minister has, inter alia, resulted in this Joint Venture.”
He said that the joint venture will help India in its journey towards clean,
sustainable, affordable, safe and long-lasting energy options and facilitate
much faster adoption of e-vehicles in the country.
Pradhan said that energy is integral to support the
fast-growing Indian economy and its ambitions. "Our energy sector will be
growth-centric, industry-friendly and environment conscious. We have the onerous
task of ensuring ample access to energy to improve the lives of Indians coupled
with the need to have a smaller carbon footprint. In this scenario, this
technology to develop indigenous batteries using locally available Aluminium
fits into the energy vision of India as espoused by Prime Minister Modi,
wherein he has given a clear call for increasing the contribution of
electricity to decarbonise mobility."
Based on domestically available Aluminium, the joint venture
plans to manufacture Aluminium-Air systems in India to provide a boost to
India's flagship programme ‘Make in India’ and at the same time, recycling of
used Aluminium will help India in becoming ‘Aatmanirbhar’ for energy
He expressed the happiness that apart from Maruti Suzuki,
leading automobile industry representatives such as Ashok Leyland and Mahindra
Electric are part of the validation of the technology. Pradhan urged the Indian
industry, primarily the automotive manufacturers, to extend all necessary
support to the joint venture for commercializing the Aluminium-Air technology.
Dr. Yuval Steinitz lauded the initiative, saying that this
is indicative of increasingly close cooperation between the two countries.
Tarun Kapoor, Secretary, MoP&NG, said that India's
energy demand is going to increase at a faster pace compared to the world, and
the country is looking for a breakthrough in storage technology-batteries that
are compact, cheaper, lighter and have higher energy density. He described
today's initiative as pathbreaking. The minister also launched the logo of the
SM Vaidya, Chairman, IndianOil said, "With one of the
most extensive customer interfaces in the country, IndianOil has been working
continuously to improve customer's experience and provide solutions for all kinds
of energy needs. The JV between IndianOil and Phinergy for commercializing
Aluminium-Air technology is an important initiative towards technology-driven
Energy Transition. Al-Air technology will help us overcome most of the current
challenges for e-Vehicles and address most of the potential customers'
pain-points, including range anxiety, higher cost of purchase, and safety
issues. This technology will also boost India's existing aluminium industry and
help the nation become Self-reliant in the energy field and promote the 'Make
in India' drive."
Dr SSV Ramakumar, Director (R&D), IndianOil spoke about
the game the changing technology of metal-air battery which would define a new
e-mobility paradigm in the Indian context.