• What is an SLI battery?

    SLI stands for starting, lighting, ignition. This is typically a 12-volt battery that powers all the vehicle’s on-board electronic systems. These need to be run all the time. SLI batteries provide an immediate power boost.

  • Why does my electric vehicle need a separate SLI Battery?

    Every electric vehicle uses a 12-volt auxiliary battery to power the electrical systems and traction battery management. These are simpler, cheaper, maintenance free, and safer than the 400V or 800V powertrain batteries that power the vehicle.

  • Why are you not focusing on developing hydrogen solutions to power vehicles?

    Hydrogen is not energy efficient – it uses 3 times more energy to make than it releases. There are also storage considerations. Hydrogen has to be kept at supercool temperatures at enormous pressure. Hydrogen is also highly explosive.

  • Why are you focusing on lead starter batteries; surely EV batteries are more relevant?

    Approximately 100 million starter batteries are fitted by OEMs every year. This is the largest energy storage market of all.

    ICE vehicles will be continue to be made in significant numbers for the next 10 years, including hybrid vehicles.

    There is also an urgent need for lightweight starter batteries to accommodate a growing array of on-board auxiliary systems and connected services. Ultimate Battery Company Duophasic technology can typically save 12-15kg (26-33lbs) of vehicle weight, which significantly impacts on CO2 reduction.

    OEMs assume a nominal £11 per kg of weight saved on a vehicle.

    In addition, most EVs also require a 12V auxillary SLI battery for the electrical system and traction battery management. This is not expected to change for the foreseeable future.

  • How do UBC batteries differ to traditional lead-acid?

    UBC Duophasic COR batteries are typically 12-15kg (26-33lbs) lighter than traditional starter batteries with comparable energy output.

    UBC Duophasic COR batteries are based on a unique modular design, which allows the adaptation of the battery’s form factor to make effective use of space for challenging applications.

  • Why should I choose UBC lead-carbon batteries over lithium batteries?

    Environmentally, lead is better. It is easier to recycle and easier to produce. Lithium batteries use lithium ore which must be mined and large amounts of water are used in the production process. Lithium batteries are difficult to recycle because of the toxic chemicals they contain. Because lithium battery cells have to be electronically controlled they rely on silicon chips which are mostly made in Taiwan so there is a logistics and security of supply risk. Currently there are very few recycling facilities for lithium.

    There are also concerns about the continuity of supply of lithium with China having more than half of the world’s reserves of lithium.

  • How does a UBC battery save up to 15kg of CO2 per vehicle?

    Simply by reducing the weight of the battery. This reduces vehicle weight, and therefore lowers the amount of carbon emissions produced.

  • How much CO2 will I save each year by using a UBC SLI battery?

    The exact amount of CO2 savings will depend on a number of factors. These include the type and weight of the vehicle, its standard emissions, and the annual mileage.

    For example:

    For a typical SUV:

    • Weight with traditional SLI battery: 2440kg; emissions 219g per kilometre
    • Weight with UBC SLI battery: 2425kg; emissions 217g per kilometre.
    • Annual mileage: 16093 km (10,00 miles)
    • Annual CO2 emissions saving: 32186g or 32.16kg (or 70.9 lbs)

    For a small family car:

    • Weight with traditional SLI battery: 1400kg; emissions 109g per kilometre
    • Weight with UBC SLI battery: 1385kg; emissions 108g per kilometre
    • Annual mileage: 16093km (10,000 miles)
    • Annual CO2 emissions saving: 16098g or 16.0kg (or 35.5 lbs)

  • Can I buy a battery direct from UBC?

    No. We supply automotive manufacturers only at this stage.

  • Can UBC battery technology be used directly in and with any vehicular manufacturer?

    UBC batteries are typical OEM automotive standard, just lighter, more energy-dense and smaller. They can be sold to all OEM automotive, aerospace and other vehicle manufacturers, as well as for aftermarket replacement.

  • Are UBC developing other products for the automotive market?

    In our Innovation Hub we are looking at the next generation of EV powertrains to give longer range and faster charging times and to even out demands on the electrical infrastructure. If everyone today had an EV and tried to recharge it between 5pm and 7pm, it is very likely that the electric grid would be overloaded and the lights would go out.

  • Are all EV batteries lithium-ion?

    The majority of batteries for Electric Vehicle (EV) propulsion are Li-ion, with Toyota and other Japanese OEMs being the exception as they use Nickel Metal Hydride for EV propulsion.

  • Are there 12 volt lithium-ion batteries in production vehicles today?

    Li-ion batteries are currently primarily used for propulsion, and there are only a few Li-ion batteries used for SLI (Starting, Lighting and Ignition). This is because Li-ion does not have the cold cranking amps at low temperature (‘grunt’) to turn over an engine and start the vehicle.

    Note: Some vehicles have two batteries: lead-acid for SLI and Li-ion for when the vehicle is idling at traffic lights etc, and the engine is stopped. UBC can replace both batteries with one compact, energy-powerful design, saving further weight and space.

    UBC will initially be producing Duophasic COR 12V SLI batteries to service the new vehicle SLI market (70+ million per year)  and the new vehicle stop-start market (30+ million per year). In addition, UBC will participate in the 186 million per year replacement used vehicle SLI battery market, by discussing opportunities with selected partner companies.

  • Will electric vehicles ever become practical?

    That’s our goal. We are working on developing the technology that make owning an electric vehicle as easy and simple as possible with longer range and faster charging times.

  • Isn’t this just another technology which will be superseded?

    UBC Duophasic technology is a breakthrough meta-technology. The patented architecture and principal materials can be successfully used in all future energy storage solutions, as well as being utilised using other chemistries. Nothing UBC and our key partners can foresee makes the technology obsolete.

  • Does the UBC battery scale in energy and power?

    Due to their modular format, UBC batteries can be easily scaled in both voltage and capacity.

    By connecting UBC Duophasic modular batteries in series we are able to scale voltage. For example, by connecting 4x 12V modules in series to generate 48V.

    We can also increase amp hours (Ah) capacity by connecting multiple battery modules in parallel.

    Scale can also be increased by building battery modules with a bigger voltage. For example, 14V and greater in increments of 2V.

    This enables us to utilise tested and standardised sizes to very effectively scale up the UBC Duophasic technology to any required size. In turn, we create the added benefit of standardising for mass production, reducing complexity while generating increased manufacturing efficiency.

  • Battery technology overall isn’t really green. How is yours green from an environmental point of view?

    Amongst many benefits, UBC Duophasic batteries have been specifically designed and engineered to be reverse-manufactured at end of life with an estimated 95% of the materials recovered to create new batteries.

    Over 95% of the lead in current batteries has been recycled for many years.

    UBC manufacturing is a straightforward process requiring less than half the energy of an equivalent Li-ion battery to manufacture.

    The UBC Duophasic battery is logistically straightforward, requiring minimal steps to manufacture, unlike Li-ion which has multiple and complex steps, as well as a very convoluted supply chain.

  • How much maintenance does a UBC modular battery require?

    UBC Duophasic batteries are maintenance free. The unique modular design also makes repair and replacement easier.

  • What other uses are there for the UBC Battery?

    They can solve the problem of energy storage. On sunny and windy days, renewable energy sources produce more energy than is needed. UBC Duophasic STOR batteries can store the excess. This can then be released when there is no sun or wind. This helps to overcome the objection to renewables, that you can’t be sure they will supply energy when you need it.

Good to know:

  • UBC are creating a modern manufacturing and innovation centre in South Yorkshire that will be the first new lead battery manufacturing facility in the UK for over 25 years.
  • By the end of 2023 the site will employ nearly 200 staff from production operatives to research scientists and administration staff.
  • UBC is working with some of the UK’s leading Universities to research and develop future battery technology solutions.
  • UBC will be exporting products and technology around the world and contributing to the UK economy.

If you have a question for us, please submit your question on our enquiry from. Thank you.