In those far off days when The Royal Navy in oak built Frigates and Ships of the Line commanded by fearless and duty bound young men controlled the world’s oceans there arose a common saying amongst the cut throat crew below decks. – “don’t spoil the ship for a ha’p’orth of tar “. Literally do not skimp on the application of cheap coal tar because it kept the ship water tight and afloat.

Today the drive towards a green economy requires a massive shift from internal combustion engines to electric to power road vehicles, aircraft and ships. This in turn requires huge investment in the manufacturing capacity of lithium ion batteries to power these vehicles. This is happening with 1000 gwh+ capacity of giga plants under construction and planned in the UK, EU and USA. As the West rushes to catch up with China Korea and Japan.

The focus is not just on the numbers of battery cells required but also on battery output, speed of charging and mileage per charge. It is estimated that at least 50% of this battery cell production will be in pouch cell and solid state formats both of which will need battery tabs.

The tabs are that ha’p’orth of tar. Up to now these small metal components have been taken for granted or even overlooked. However they are the vital links between the individual battery cells which join them in series to form the power packs to provide the means to achieve output, mileage and speed of charging. As is often the case what looks simple from the outside is in reality far from it. Recent research into enhancing battery performance has highlighted the crucial role that is played by these tab leads. The design and shape of the tabs, the metals employed in their manufacture, the coatings applied to the metals and the polymers utilised in their final production all assist is enhancing the output and safety of the tab leads.

ABM understand the nature of the challenge and the technology and will be Europe’s Centre of Excellence for battery tab production. Leading the way in innovation, performance and safety.