The most critical non-active component in the lead/acid battery is the grid or substrate. A review of the work on grids and grid alloys in the period 1960-1993 has been carried out by the Advanced Lead-Acid Battery Consortium and, in this paper, the results are analyzed in relation to the effort expended on different alloy systems. Lead-antimony alloys and the effects on them of additions of arsenic, tin, and grain-refining elements (selenium, sulfur, copper), together with lead-calcium alloys and the effect on them of tin additions, have received the greatest attention in the past. Proposals are made for future studies. Possible evolutionary developments include the addition of silver and higher amounts of tin to lead-calcium alloys, more detailed investigations of lead-strontium and lead-lithium alloys containing tin and/or silver, and further work on very-low-antimony alloys. More speculative projects are very rapidly cooled alloys, the use of aluminium as grids or spines, plastic/lead-coated copper negative grids, corrosion-resistant coatings of lead compounds on the grids and, finally, a substrate for a bipolar plate that is based on conductive inorganic compounds.