Bosch and IBM join forces to search for critical substitute minerals

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FRANKFURT/BERLIN, Nov 9 (Reuters) – Germany’s Bosch (ROBG.UL) has formed a partnership with IBM to use quantum computing and simulation technology to find alternatives to rare earths and metals needed for electric vehicles .

Minerals used in magnets for electric motors, fuel cell membranes for hydrogen technology, and in aerospace and defense are expensive and often mined unsustainably.

China supplies 98% of the European Union’s demand for magnets made from rare earths, and minerals for lithium, nickel and cobalt batteries are also almost entirely imported from abroad.

The research cooperation will use quantum computing to explore which different materials could partially or fully replace those currently in use, said Thomas Kropf, head of research and development at Bosch. The objective is to obtain results within a decade.

“This technology is on the verge of becoming a reality,” said Bosch CEO Stefan Hartung.

He added that Bosch was sharing its materials simulation experience with IBM for “very specific application areas” and in return would get “a better understanding of the power and applicability of computer science. quantum, including hardware”.

Overall, Bosch is investing 10 billion euros ($10 billion) in digitalization and connectivity by 2025, with new technologies focused on sustainability and mobility accounting for two-thirds.

($1 = 0.9927 euros)

Reporting by Christoph Steitz, Victoria Waldersee; Editing by Jan Harvey and Barbara Lewis

Our standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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