Materials and Process Innovations for Next Generation Batteries
Young-Hye Na – Manager, Advanced Energy Storage Group, Materials Innovation and Discovery Department, IBM Almaden Research Center, firstname.lastname@example.org
The need for efficient, high capacity batteries in almost every aspect of our life including power generation and consumption, consumer electronics, healthcare, and transportation is ubiquitous and growing. While much of this demand is currently satisfied by lithium ion batteries, the gradual saturation in achievable battery capacity, significant increase of raw materials costs, and increasing safety concerns have spurred growing interest in new battery materials and chemistries that might offer greatly improved performance with lower cost. We believe innovation in this space is critical for the future of the low carbon, sustainable economy.
Recognizing this need, IBM Research-Almaden launched the energy storage program (dubbed “Battery 500”) in 2009 with the aim of exploratory research to catalyze the development of next generation batteries that would allow an electric car to travel 500 miles on a single full charge. Our progress in this endeavor was accelerated through deep experience in chemistry, material science, physics, nanotechnology and supercomputer modeling. We investigated metal-oxygen batteries that were predicted to have extremely high theoretical specific energy (as high as that of gasoline for Li-O2 battery). During the course of this work, we provided several fundamental insights into electrochemistry and failure mechanisms of the systems by leveraging our state-of-the-art characterization capabilities (ex. DEMS, in-situ AFM installed in a glove box).
While developing new component materials for metal-air batteries to address several challenging issues, we have also broadened our research scope to explore other emerging systems including all solid-state lithium-metal batteries, fast-charging batteries with cobalt-free cathode materials (cost benefit), and micro-batteries to power small sensing devices for the Internet of Things (IoT).
In this presentation, IBM’s strategy and recent technical achievements on next generation rechargeable batteries will be introduced.