Battery technology patents and specialist testing equipment are being offered for sale by business restructuring group BDO, which is handling the assets of Oxis Energy after the company went into administration—a step that precedes sale or liquidation—on May 19. The UK-based company collapsed after failing to secure fresh investment, with the loss of 60 jobs, many of them held by highly experienced engineers.
The sale includes 43 patent families covering technologies such as quasi solid-state batteries, electrolyte systems for lithium-sulfur cells, methods of lithium-sulfur cell construction, and positive and negative electrodes. Specific European patents include a rechargeable lithium-sulfur battery with high specific energy, connecting contact leads to lithium-based electrodes, and a battery management system.
Earlier this year, Oxis Energy said it expected to start delivering its solid-state lithium-sulfur batteries to customers for trial applications in the fall of 2021. The privately owned UK company said the technology will offer significantly improved performance for electric aircraft developers, compared with existing lithium-ion batteries.
The first generation of Oxis’s Quasi Solid-State Li-S cells will have a specific energy of 450 Wh/kg and an energy density of 550 Wh/L. The company believes these levels could be boosted to 550 Wh/kg and 700 Wh/L by the fall of 2023, and then to 600 Wh/kg and 900 Wh/L by 2026.
Oxis has been looking to supply its batteries to electric aircraft manufacturers and propulsion system companies. It partnered with Bye Aerospace for its eFlyer family of aircraft and with engine group Safran for its electric motors.
“The company was unable to secure the investment required to continue its product development,” said BDO business restructuring partner Simon Girling. “However, we are hopeful of obtaining a sale of the company’s specialist testing equipment, together with approximately 200 patents held by the company, and the opportunity remains for an acquirer to purchase these assets in situ at an internationally acclaimed Testing Centre, and separate research and development facility.”
Prospective bidders for Oxis's assets have until June 9 to register their interest with BDO.