The British lithium-sulphur battery specialist Oxis Energy is apparently on the verge of going out of business. As the company could not “raise the investment required to continue its product development”, Oxis is now to be wound up and the patents auctioned off.
As the British accountancy firm BDO LLP, which says it has been appointed to wind up Oxis Energy Limited, writes in a statement obtained by our editors, the majority of the 60 staff employed at the headquarters and other sites in Oxfordshire and South Wales have been made redundant. Simon Girling and Chris Marsden of BDO have been appointed as insolvency practitioners.
The company had been unable to secure the investment needed to continue its product development, Gilring said. “However, we are hopeful of a sale of the company’s specialist testing equipment and some 200 patents,” Girling said, according to the statement. “An acquirer will still have the opportunity to purchase these assets on site at an internationally recognised test centre and separate R & D facility.” Bids are being accepted for this until 28 May.
The 43 patent families cover the company’s speciality, quasi-solid-state batteries with lithium-sulphur cell chemistry. Besides the patent “Lithium-sulphur battery with high specific energy” (EP2824739 B1), the patents probably also cover cell contacting (EP2791998 B1) or battery management (GB2569140 B2).
Oxis Energy had primarily targeted aviation with its energy-dense Li-S cells. Since 2019, the company had been working towards series production, for example with a cathode plant in Port Talbot (Wales) and the actual cell production in Brazil. For this purpose, the company rented a production facility from Mercedes-Benz Brazil in Juiz de Fora in 2020.
As recently as April 2021, Oxis Energy announced that it would deliver the first Li-S cells to customers and partners for testing this autumn. Only a few days later, the US company Bye Aerospace, which has been cooperating with Oxis for some time, announced a nine-seat electric aircraft with a range of 1,000 kilometres based on the Li-S cells.
Oxis always emphasised that its batteries are up to 60 per cent lighter than NMC cells and do not require materials such as cobalt, manganese, nickel or copper.
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