Yissum offering novel high-performance anode for sodium-ion batteries; antimony sulphide nanoparticle-coated graphene
Sodium-ion batteries (Na-ion, NIBs) are seen as an alternative to lithium-ion batteries for large-scale applications due to their lower cost and abundant supply of sodium. However, low capacity and poor rate capability of existing anodes have been major obstacles to the commercialization of NIBs.
Yissum, the Research and Development Company of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, is offering a novel anode for sodium-ion batteries (Na-ion, NIB) which enables the production of a battery with high capacity, excellent rate capability and good cycle performance. Yissum is the technology transfer company of the University.
The anode, developed by Professor Ovadia Lev from the Center for Nanoscience and Nanotechnology at the Casali Institute of Applied Chemistry at the Hebrew University, together with colleagues from Singapore’s Nanyang Technological University (NTU) and The Russian Academy of Science, Moscow, is based on coating graphene with antimony sulphide (stibnite) nanoparticles.
It gives a high capacity of 730 mAh g−1 at 50 mA g−1, an excellent rate capability up to 6C and a good cycle performance. The promising performance is attributed to fast sodium ion diffusion from the small nanoparticles, and good electrical transport from the intimate contact between the active material and graphene, which also provides a template for anchoring the nanoparticles. We also demonstrate a battery with the stibnite–graphene composite that is free from sodium metal, having energy density up to 80 Wh kg−1. The energy density could exceed that of some lithium-ion batteries with further optimization.—Yu et al.
The novel anode is based on a new coating technology, also invented by Prof. Lev together with Dr. Petr Prikhodchenko, which enables coating of graphenes with a thin film of nanoparticles at low cost. Prof. Lev and Dr. Denis Y.W. Yu, along with Dr. Sudip K Batabyal from the Energy Research Institute @ Nanyang Technological University (ERI@N) and their teams optimized and tested the battery’s performance. Tests conducted at NTU showed that the novel composite material performs extremely well as an anode for the new sodium-ion batteries.
The material provides more than two times the capacity of hard carbon, retains its charge capacity even at high current rates, and exhibits a charge and discharge time of 10 minutes. This would allow fast charging of NIBs in the future, which could enable utilization in applications such as electric vehicles. In addition to the excellent rate capability, the material also shows stable cycle performance, with capacity retention of more than 95% after 50 cycles.
Research on the anode was sponsored by Singapore’s National Research Foundation, under its Campus for Research Excellence and Technological Enterprise (CREATE) programs in Electromobility and Nanomaterials for energy and water management, in addition to the Israel-Strategic Alternative Energy Foundation. The study on the material was recently published in Nature Communications.
Yissum is now looking for potential partners for further development and commercialization of this invention.
Denis Y. W. Yu, Petr V. Prikhodchenko, Chad W. Mason, Sudip K. Batabyal, Jenny Gun, Sergey Sladkevich, Alexander G. Medvedev & Ovadia Lev (2013) “High-capacity antimony sulphide nanoparticle-decorated graphene composite as anode for sodium-ion batteries,” Nature Communications 4, Article number: 2922 doi: 10.1038/ncomms3922