Nanotech Nabs Top Battery Researcher as Science Advisor
Source: Streetwise Reports
June 13, 2023 (Investorideas.com Newswire) A Tesla research partner and a pioneer of lithium-ion battery technology is joining Meta Materials Inc.'s scientific advisory board.
A world-renowned researcher and pioneer of lithium-ion battery technology is joining Meta Materials Inc.'s (MMAT:NASDAQ; MMAX:CSE; MMAT:FSE) scientific advisory board, the company announced.
Professor Jeff Dahn of Dalhousie University is the principal investigator for the NSERC/Dalhousie/Tesla Canada Alliance Grant, which will run until at least 2026.
Dahn said Tesla, his exclusive research partner, lets him be involved with Nova Scotia-based companies like META.
"I am impressed by META's technology to enhance battery performance through their NCORE™ and NPORE® battery materials which can have a positive impact in the fields of grid storage, electric transportation, and resource management for the energy transition," Dahn said.
With electric vehicles (EVs) set to lead the way in the new energy transition, Nova Scotia-based-META said its products would make lithium batteries safer and more efficient while extending their range and making battery supply chains more sustainable.
NPORE® is a free-standing, flexible separator made with a ceramic nanomaterial that provides less than 1% heat shrinkage up to 220° C, META said. Conventional plastic separators shrink at higher temperatures, which can cause thermal runaway and battery failures.
META presented at the International Battery Seminar in Orlando, Fla., earlier this year and was chosen as a finalist in its Best of Show awards program recognizing the best new battery products.
The company recently received a new patent directed at lithium batteries where the anode, or negative electrode, comprises a dispersion or "wet" layer of the anode materials.
"NPORE® provides outstanding heat resistance compared with conventional polymer separators, which show significant shrinkage at elevated temperatures due to the melting of the polymer," Water Tower Research analyst Graham Mattison wrote in a March research note.
Driven by the EV boom, the lithium-ion battery market is expected to reach US$135 billion by 2031, according to a report by Markets and Markets. Future Market Insights Inc. said the global lithium-ion battery separator market could be worth US$3.2 billion by 2032.
The Catalyst: Pushing the Boundaries of Battery Technology
Dahn has co-authored 770 papers and has 78 inventions with patents issued or filed, the company said. He was NSERC/Tesla Canada Industrial Research Chair with Dalhousie University from 2016 to 2021 and became chief scientific advisor to NOVONIX in 2021.
"META is dedicated to pushing the boundaries of battery technology across different chemistries and cell formats," META President and Chief Executive Officer George Palikaras said. "We are incredibly privileged and proud to have Prof. Dahn, a globally recognized expert, guiding us in our pursuit."
Dahn received Canada's top science award, the Gerhard Herzberg Gold Medal in Science and Engineering in 2017, and the Killam Prize in 2022. He was appointed an Officer of the Order of Canada in 2020 and will receive the Olin Palladium Medal from the Electrochemical Society, its highest honor, this year.
The company is applying its futuristic technology to the communications, health and wellness, aerospace, automotive, and clean energy sectors. It now has 512 active patent documents, including 322 that have been issued.
"META is at the early stage of what we expect will be a significant growth curve as its technologies are incorporated into many of today's products in a range of industries," Mattison wrote. "The company's growing portfolio of technologies, along with its production capabilities, partnerships, and deep patent portfolio, give META a competitive advantage as it works to penetrate addressable markets that are collectively well in excess of US$50 billion."
'The Potential to Disrupt Various End Markets'
Developed first in the 1960s, design and manufacturing capabilities caught up to metamaterials in the 2000s.
META is using them to develop nanotechnology products like self-deicing and defogging car and truck headlights and windows, see-through antennas, augmented reality glasses that look like regular glasses, and special eyewear that protects pilots' eyes from laser strikes.
At the Consumer Electronics Show this year, META was named a 2023 Innovation Awards honoree for its NANOWEB® transparent film to clear up microwave windows.
A microwave display, with its completely clear window, drew big crowds on the conference floor. On Day 2 of the show, META was the most talked about brand at CES according to social media trend tracker BuzzRadar.
NANOWEB® is also used to de-ice auto sensors and manufacture antennas and electrochromic lenses for augmented reality and 5G reflector films.
"We believe Meta is well-positioned to secure partnerships with major companies over the next year," Alliance Global Partners analyst Jake Sekelsky wrote while initiating coverage of META in February. "We believe Meta's solutions have the potential to disrupt various end markets."
Ownership and Share Structure
About 15% of META is held by management and insiders, according to Yahoo Finance. Among them is President and Chief Executive Officer George Palikaras, who owns 8.3% or 29.9 million shares, Reuters reported.
Yahoo said about 11% of the company is held by institutions. Some of the top holders are State Street Global Advisors (US), with 4% or 14.49 million shares, and Nova Scotia Innovation Corp., with 3.45% or 12.5 million shares, according to Reuters.
The rest, 74%, is retail.
The company has a market cap of $107.97 million, with 467.2 million shares outstanding and 345.8 million free-floating. It trades in a 52-week range of US$2.34 and US$0.18.
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