The scheme, which allows those in business and academia to apply for government funds to work on a range of possible electric battery schemes, is part of Britain’s industrial strategy, which Prime Minister Theresa May published in January.
It is designed to take a more hands-on approach to developing key industries to help protect the economy as Britain leaves the European Union.
Automakers are racing to build greener vehicles and improve charge times in a bid to meet rising customer demand and meet air quality targets. But Britain lacks sufficient manufacturing capacity, an area ministers are keen to build up.
The first tranche comprises a £45 million pot of money which will help to establish a ‘Battery Institute’ for research to help improve the affordability of the technology, which needs to bolster charge and use times, reduce storage sizes and boost capacity.