On Thursday, auto component maker Sona Comstar stated that it had conjoined hands with Israel”s IRP Nexus Group (IRP) to initiate a project to co-develop a new electric motor that would elude usage of rare earth elements.
The companies have come collectively with iCreate (International Centre for Entrepreneurship and Technology) to develop, manufacture and sell the new electric motor globally. As per the agreement between the entities, IRP will license its technology to Sona Comstar to manufacture the system exclusively in India, foreseeing starting mass production in 2023. The project would constitute an innovative motor-plus-controller combination that does not utilize rare earth elements like neodymium, apart from contributing high efficiency and low cost to manufacturers of electric two and three-wheelers.
IRP Systems Co-founder and Chief Executive Officer Moran Price stated in a statement, “Our technology ensures not only cleaner air but also a more environment-friendly production process and responsible use of natural resources. We are excited to partner with a global, leading player such as Sona Comstar to bring the product to the mass market”. Sona Comstar CTO Kiran Deshmukh noted that the partnership with IRP would help India reduce its dependence on imports of critical raw materials while commenting on the initiative. “The system developed through this partnership will be environmentally compatible and cost-effective, ensuring the security of natural resources by avoiding the use of rare earth elements, ” he added further.
The iCreate program has begun the project with the aspiration of Indian companies building and holding futuristic technology, going beyond solely licensing and manufacturing, as encouraged by the Atmanirbhar Bharat philosophy. The project involves Sona Comstar and IRP collaborating to conceptualize, design, prototype, and manufacture high efficiency, low-cost, magnet-less powertrain for electric two and three-wheelers for the global market.
iCreate is the country’s leading institution for transforming tech innovation-based start-ups into successful businesses, with Gujarat’s support and the Central governments. IRP Systems produces electric powertrain systems for different e-mobility platforms, empowering powerful and reasonable electric vehicles. Sona Comstar manufactures several components like differential assemblies, differential gears, conventional and micro-hybrid starter motors and has nine plants expanded across India, China, Mexico, and the US.