Lilium and Livent, one of the world’s leading producers of high-performance lithium battery cells, have announced a research and development (R&D) collaboration agreement.

Collaborating with Livent, a pioneer in lithium technology innovation and production for nearly eighty years, is described by Lilium as an important step towards securing its future access to high-performance battery cell technology that will power Lilium’s jets.

Livent supplies lithium to many of the world’s premier electric vehicle brands and battery makers, using its differentiated technology processes to both source raw lithium and manufacture a range of specialty lithium products in an environmentally responsible, safe and sustainable manner.

Lilium chief operating officer Yves Yemsi said: “This collaboration is a milestone in Lilium’s commitment to revolutionise regional air travel.

“Innovation is at the heart of our mission, and to keep innovating we need to collaborate with the best in the industry, so Livent’s unique expertise in lithium production, as well as their commitment to sustainably responsible practices, makes them an ideal partner.”

Livent director of R&D and new business development Marina Yakovleva, said: “The Livent R&D team is excited about the opportunity to work with leading scientists and engineers at Lilium to advance e-mobility and battery technology.

“Innovation is in the DNA of both companies, as is a shared commitment to advancing electric transportation and sustainability solutions. Together, we hope to drive meaningful progress in realizing the potential of next generation battery technologies and decarbonising air travel.”

In July 2021, Lilium partnered with Customcells to manufacture lithium-ion batteries at its facility in Tübingen in Germany for its seven-seater eVTOL aircraft ahead of a planned commercial launch in 2024.

The previous day, Joby Aviation flew a full-size prototype of its eVTOL aircraft more than 150 miles on a single charge, using commercially available lithium ion batteries adapted for aerospace use.