Start-ups as technology life cycle indicator for the early stage of application: An analysis of the battery value chain

Publication Type:
Journal Article
Journal of Cleaner Production, 2018, 201 pp. 325 - 333
Issue Date:
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© 2018 Elsevier Ltd Insights from battery research and development (R&D) need to be transferred into industrial application to create innovations and thus foster e.g. electro mobility. In terms of battery technology transfer, the early phase of application is particularly challenging due to the close intertwining between R&D and application. Therefore, the present study introduces start-ups as an additional indicator to capture the transition from science to industry within the technology life cycle. The findings show that despite highly dynamic R&D activities, technology transfer is only taking place on a very limited level. Surprisingly, start-ups focus on incremental improvements of existing technologies instead of introducing radical breakthrough-technologies. An analysis of the battery value chain reveals that opportunities for start-ups are rather located downstream in the value chain when integrating cells to battery systems and developing applications relying on innovative battery technologies. The findings contribute to the area of technology life cycle analysis explicitly using start-up companies as additional indicator for the critical transfer step from R&D to application. In a similar vein, technology forecasting literature, which is to date mainly focused on R&D, is expanded by a more application-centred perspective that allows identifying transfer opportunities along the technology value chain.
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