Critical Battery Materials Initiative

Hosted by the National Research Council of Canada's Clean Energy Innovation Research Centre, the Critical Battery Materials Initiative will establish automated, AI-enabled platforms that can discover new critical battery materials and processes in a third of the time it takes today, contributing to the growth of the Canadian battery supply chain.

This 4-year initiative, launched in 2023, will provide funding for projects aligned with the Canadian Critical Minerals Strategy to grow targeted capabilities and partnerships under our Advanced Clean Energy program. To accelerate our impact in battery mineral processing and battery materials discovery, the initiative will combine the unique platforms and expertise of the NRC's advanced materials research facility in Mississauga with grants and contributions funding for eligible academic and industrial partners.

Modern building with white exterior walls
The initiative will make use of the unique platforms and expertise of the NRC's advanced materials research facility in Mississauga.

Now open: Canada-Germany 3+2 collaborative call for proposals on battery material discovery and processing

Working together, the governments of Canada and Germany aim to foster and support collaborative industrial research and development (R&D) projects with a high potential for commercialization. This call for proposals is open to organizations from Canada and Germany who wish to form project consortia to perform collaborative projects focused on developing innovative battery materials and battery material production processes.

Learn more about the call for proposals

Areas of focus

As a result of a gap identified in Canada's battery materials' midstream supply chain between critical mineral mining and battery manufacturing, the initiative will establish self-driving labs to accelerate and link discoveries in new battery materials with more economically and environmentally sustainable approaches to processing battery minerals.

Two technology areas will be developed to deliver on the initiative's objectives:

  1. Midstream battery minerals processing acceleration platform: Self-driving labs and machine learning approaches to develop more efficient and sustainable processing pathways to produce battery materials from raw and recycled source materials
  2. Battery materials acceleration platform: Self-driving labs and machine learning approaches to discover new battery materials with optimized performance, safety and sustainability characteristics

Meet the team

Jennifer Littlejohns

Program Director, Advanced Clean Energy program

Lawrence Charlebois

Manager, Critical Battery Materials Initiative

Mireille Goulet

Innovation Investment Advisor for climate and industry, National Program Office

Yaser Abu-Lebdeh

Technical Leader, battery materials innovation

Ben Yu

Technical Leader, mineral processing

Robert Black

Leading Expert, acceleration of materials discovery and process optimization

James McKinnell

Strategic Advisor, Clean Energy Innovation Research Centre

Collaborate with us

Grants and contributions funding is available through the NRC's National Program Office for eligible collaborators who offer complementary expertise. Funding may include contributions to collaborative R&D and for equipment needed for research in fundamental areas. Learn more about funded collaborative R&D programs and initiatives at the NRC.

Contact us

Lawrence Charlebois, Manager, Critical Battery Materials Initiative 
Telephone: 613-298-8237 

Business Development general inquiries:


CBMI general inquiries:


Targeted industries

Critical mineral processors, active materials producers, advanced materials manufacturers, battery manufacturers and recyclers, battery chemistry innovators

Related links

Stay connected

Follow the National Research Council of Canada on social media.

Twitter: @nrc_cnrc on Twitter
Instagram: @nrc_cnrc on Instagram
Search for: #NRCChallengeBatteryMaterials