Dr. Akshay Singhal is the Founder & CEO of Log 9 Materials. He is a young and dynamic entrepreneur and a 2019 Forbes Under30 Asia awardee — who stands to solve the pressing global issue of climate change with the power of nanotechnology and innovation. His start-up Log 9 Materials “nannovates” with the objective to pave a sustainable and better future for humankind by using the wonder material – ‘Graphene’
The EV adoption boom in India will last. For precedence, we only need to look at the developed economies, the likes of the US and China. Mammoth auto companies which have dominated the market for decades are either going under or are struggling to evolve because they did not jump at the EV boom, and the companies that did (the likes of Tesla, BYD, etc.) are flying high. As a matter of fact, the top 5 automobile companies in China are all into EVs and most of them did not exist a decade ago. The same is the case with India – traditional OEMs who miss the EV boom are going to be left behind and replaced by new-age companies. And the primary reason the boom will not fizzle away is that the rally is driven by a fundamental need for sustainable and clean mobility, which is critical for all of humanity.
Until recently, EVs were only looked at from an environmental lens. However, the breakthroughs in battery tech and manufacturing have made EVs economically viable. The economics for commercial two and three-wheelers in the last mile delivery fleet operator use case is already better for EVs. Especially, for the two-wheeler segment, many EV variants are cheaper to own and use than their Petrol counterparts. And with the charging infrastructure scaling rapidly, it is only a matter of time before the number of EVs on our roads sky-rocket.
Further, there is a significant need to develop local technologies and solutions. As, typical Indian conditions include high temperatures, erratic driving patterns, uneven roads, unique vehicle types. Borrowing and force-fitting conventional Li-Ion for such requirements without substantial indigenization both at cell and pack level will only lead to operational challenges and customer dissatisfaction. We have already seen current EVs when used in such conditions resulting in a month-on-month degradation of the vehicle range, as well as will need replacement after 2-3 years adding to the costs. Hence, there’s a huge opportunity to build indigenized technologies for India’s value-searching market. Moreover, with India already having missed the bus on conventional Li-ion batteries, the focus needs to shift on niche technologies suitable for Indian use cases where our country can still achieve global leadership. That is where companies like Log 9 come in.
Log 9 is building high-power hybrid Li-ion batteries capable of fully charging in 15 minutes for a two-wheeler and 40 minutes for a three-wheeler, ideal for a commercial use case. The batteries have a life of over 15,000 cycles, corresponding to over 15 years of usage. With already certified less than 3% degradation in the life of a typical last-mile delivery vehicle. Moreover, the battery can charge/discharge at 5-6C continuously with a peak power of 9C. High power allows quicker acceleration/deceleration and a consistent load-carrying capacity (500 kg payload for three-wheelers). The battery is quite robust and can function in temperatures from -30 to 65 ℃. Similar to Log 9, as other companies identify their niche and build products around them throughout the value chain, the EV market is going to be everlasting and ever-growing.