Volkswagen Group has announced it will use blockchain technology from IBM to track its mineral supply chain. The German car manufacturer is doing this to ‘responsibly source’ minerals like cobalt, which is used in batteries for electric vehicles. As part of this new deal, Volkswagen also joins an open industry collaboration.
IBM’s blockchain service tracks minerals across the global supply chain. The collaboration includes cobalt mining company Huayou, the LG Chem conglomerate from the South Korean tech firm LG, and supply chain auditing firm RCS Global.
Under the watchful eye of RCS Global, blockchain technology by IGM will be used to track supply chains. This will allowing contributing companies to meet sourcing standards set by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD). The blockchain will create a permanent record of mineral movements across the globe to support the compliance process.
Volkswagen is not the only car company that’s part of the network. Ford joined the initiative in January this year as the company started a pilot to battle child labor in countries like the Democratic Republic of Congo and Mexico. The test started with a 1.5 ton batch of cobalt that was mined in Congo, refined in China, used to create batteries in South Korea and shipped to the United States to be put in an electric vehicle made by Ford.
Using blockchain technology to track supply chains will help the firm meet responsible sourcing standards set out by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) by providing a permanent record of mineral movements to aid the compliance process.
There’s more and more activity from the automotive industry into the blockchain territory. BMW and General Motors are working on a blockchain services standard for electric cars, together with the Mobility Open Blockchain Initiative (MOBI). While IBM filed a patent for a technology that would make it easier for electric vehicles to predict driving behavior from other drivers.
Also published on Medium.