The United States Advanced Battery Consortium LLC (USABC) awarded a $2.28-million stop-start battery system development contract to Leyden Energy Inc., which is developing next-generation battery chemistries building off of its lithium-imide electrolyte platform. (Earlier post.) The award is co-funded by the US Department of Energy (DOE) and includes a 50% cost-share by Leyden Energy.
The focus of the 16-month program is to develop an advanced lithium-ion 12-volt start-stop battery system to meet or exceed the performance, life and cost targets set by USABC. Specifically, Leyden Energy will design and develop 12-volt start-stop cells using Leyden’s Li-imide chemistry. USABC had issued an amended request for proposal information (RFPI) for 12-volt start-stop advanced battery development in November 2012.
|USABC goals for advanced batteries for 12V start stop vehicle applications. Source: USABC. Click to enlarge.|
The LiPF6 electrolyte used in almost all current Li-ion cells reacts with moisture left over from the manufacturing process to produce a highly-corrosive acid that degrades performance and shortens a battery’s lifespan. This reaction happens even during storage or in normal operation, and accelerates with rising temperatures.
The Li-imide electrolyte does not react with water nor generate hydrofluoric acid, making it far more resistant to heat. This not only has enabled higher energy density and longer cycle life for legacy carbon-based active materials (anode and cathode), Leyden says, but permits the development of new chemistries with high energy density active materials, including silicon anodes.
Building on the proprietary Li-imide platform, Leyden Energy has developed an innovative LTO/LMO battery specifically designed for start/stop applications. Leyden says that its Li-Imide start/stop battery:
Can deliver a lot of power over a wide temperature range;
Is able to re-charge fAST, which is critical for recovering regenerative braking energy;
Is extremely safe due to the inherent chemical properties of the LTO/LMO electrode couple;
Is low cost;
Has very long cycle life and calendar life performance fully supporting vehicle warranty programs;
Is inexpensive and simple to integrate into a vehicle because there is no need for complex battery management systems; and
Is small in size and light weight.
The new contract is USABC’s second with Leyden; previous research with USABC included a competitively bid technology assessment contract for evaluation of its lithium-ion technology for EV applications in a high energy density pouch cell in relation to USABC EV battery goals. (Earlier post.)
Founded in 1992, USCAR is the collaborative automotive technology company for Chrysler Group LLC, Ford Motor Company and General Motors. The goal of USCAR is to further strengthen the technology base of the domestic auto industry through cooperative research and development.
USABC is a subsidiary of the United States Council for Automotive Research LLC (USCAR). Enabled by a cooperative agreement with the DOE, USABC’s mission is to develop electrochemical energy storage technologies that support commercialization of hybrid, plug-in hybrid, electric and fuel cell vehicles. As such, USABC has developed mid- and long-term goals to guide its projects and measure its progress.