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MIT Develops New Lithium Battery for Hybrids

16 February 2006

Batteryhybrid1enlarged
The structure of lithium nickel manganese oxide consists of layers of transition metal (nickel and manganese, blue layer) separated from lithium layers (green) by oxygen (red). Image: Ceder Laboratory

Hybrid Electric Vehicles require rechargeable batteries that combine high energy density with high charge and discharge rate capability. Researchers at MIT have now developed lithium nickel manganese oxide electrodes for a new type of lithium battery that offers unexpectedly high rate-capability—considerably better than lithium cobalt oxide (LiCoO2), the current battery electrode material of choice.

Scientists already knew that lithium nickel manganese oxide could store a lot of energy, but the material took too long to charge to be commercially useful. The MIT researchers set out to modify the material’s structure to make it capable of charging and discharging more quickly.

Lithium nickel manganese oxide consists of layers of metal (nickel and manganese) separated from lithium layers by oxygen. The major problem with the standard compound is that the crystalline structure is too disordered—the nickel and lithium are drawn to each other, interfering with the flow of lithium ions and slowing down the charging rate.

Lithium ions carry the battery’s charge, so to maximize the speed at which the battery can charge and discharge, the researchers designed and synthesized a material with a very ordered crystalline structure, allowing lithium ions to freely flow between the metal layers.

A battery made from the new material can charge or discharge in about 10 minutes—about 10 times faster than unmodified lithium nickel manganese oxide technology, according to Gerbrand Ceder, MIT professor of materials science and engineering, who led the project. That brings it much closer to the timeframe needed for hybrid car batteries.

The lithium nickel manganese oxide [Li(Ni0.5Mn0.5)O2] batteries would also be less expensive and more stable than lithium cobalt oxide cells. Before the material can be used commercially, the manufacturing process needs to be made less expensive, and a few other modifications will likely be necessary, Ceder said.

The research was funded by the National Science Foundation and the US Department of Energy.

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February 16, 2006 in Batteries, Hybrids | Permalink | Comments (11) | TrackBack (1)

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With further development, batteries with lithium-nickel-manganese-oxide electrodes could be offered commercially. Since such batteries promise high rate capability while requiring less expensive materials, they have potential to compete quite favorable... [Read More]

Comments

Somebody with more expertise. How about an evaluation of these claims? The example yeilds an 83% increase in range for an EV1. I know "if it seems too good to be true........" But what if it isn't ? The world has been waiting for somebody to build a better battery. Have they?

http://www.europositron.com/en/background.html

How does it compare with A123Systems new batteries?

With 20 times the capacity it's a no brainer -- Check this link:

http://www.europositron.com/en/techniques.html

I' still taking a wait and see attitude but if this is what it is then--WOW

Crushed EV1s in an Arizona junkyard will get the same mileage from either type of advanced lithium batteries.

Nirvana?
Or will it disappear right when its ready for release?
I have seem so many great things over the last couple of years yet nothing has hit the market hard.
I am not a conspiarcy nut but it does make you wonder.
If all this science seems solid where is it or why
isnt it? Fingers crossed that this will make it into
a car.

Bob

Subject: E85, E95 and Ethanol Production & Use


Eric, T., Andy, & Engineer-Poet,

I've enjoyed your E85 post immensely. There are a number of ethanol plant is the US which manufacture ethanol with “legacy” technology & processes. However, the level of efficiency used today in new plant is vastly more efficient. My firm is building one of these new plants today. We are “NOT” using fossil fuel to power our plant. Instead, we’re using biomass for our thermal feedstock. Biomass feedstock has a dramatic impact on all aspects of our plant; and this energy balance ratio (0.74:1) that’s been discussed could be null. As our feedstock is renewable, does that number matter? And if so, as a plant developer, what is the optimum energy delta?

There may be 200 ethanol plants in operation by 2008 (or more). There will be a mix of technologies and processes in play; with more on the way. We will be using a full range of feedstocks that “do” make sense within 10-15 years; even id corn doesn’t today.

Try to think of the ethanol industry the way the oil & gas industry evolved from 1895 to 2006. The ethanol industry is at about 1910 the 1915 by comparison. We will find our way – the same way we found our path to the moon. Remember folks – this is America. When we set our best minds to it we can’t be stopped – so hang in there and give the industry the support it needs to mature. With corn, and later, biomass feedstocks for ethanol production (and thermal feedstocks) we can shift from 100% oil-based fuels to 100% domestically produced fuels. But we do need your support to do that……


The1energy
CEO for a current ethanol plant in the US


Bob,

It's not a conspiracy or anything, just the realities of technology development. It takes a long time to get something from the lab bench to production scale, and there are a lot of hurdles in between that can prevent it from ever making it. For example, the production may not scale up very well, so there will never be a cost-effective way to make these batteries.

I have heard that the reason GM EV1 didnt go through was the fact that the cars never needed any repair which is where these Big Co's and Dealers make alot of money in replacement parts or even new cars. They are also heavily invested in gas companies. Its no wonder that Toyota and Honda are taking over the market. Alot of people "babyboomers" are hippies from the 60's. There was even a waiting list of 5000 plus the existing leased fleet of 1500 EV1's. Greed will eventully ruin the american automakers. We will see EV's again but from Asia.

WE NEED TO START PRODUCING NEW GENERATION BATTERIES AND CELLULOSIC ETHANOL RIGHT AWAY AND THEN BRING DOWN THE COST SLOWLY. GOVERNMENTS CAN SUBSIDISE TILL THEN. WE ARE ALREADY PAYING HIGH LEVEL OF ENVIRONMENTAL COST AND OPEC IS RUTHLESSLY EXPLOITING THE OIL MONOPOLY. COUNTRIES LIKE INDIA AND CHINA WHO ARE ON A VERY FAST GROWTH CAN LEAP FROG TO NEW ATERNATIVE ENERGIES DIRECTLY.
IS ANY BODY OFFERING CELLULOSIC TECHNOLOGY RIGHT AWAY.

WE NEED TO START PRODUCING NEW GENERATION BATTERIES AND CELLULOSIC ETHANOL RIGHT AWAY AND THEN BRING DOWN THE COST SLOWLY. GOVERNMENTS CAN SUBSIDISE TILL THEN. WE ARE ALREADY PAYING HIGH LEVEL OF ENVIRONMENTAL COST AND OPEC IS RUTHLESSLY EXPLOITING THE OIL MONOPOLY. COUNTRIES LIKE INDIA AND CHINA WHO ARE ON A VERY FAST GROWTH CAN LEAP FROG TO NEW ATERNATIVE ENERGIES DIRECTLY.
IS ANY BODY OFFERING CELLULOSIC TECHNOLOGY RIGHT AWAY.

Well I see that the last posting was about six months ago. I believe that a Canadian company is going to produce a 4 door pick up using this technology.

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