Xtalic enters EV market with materials that improve battery charger connector wear by up to 40 times
Xtalic Corporation, a leader in providing nano-scale metal alloys and coatings, has entered the electric vehicle market with products that extend the life of connectors in electric battery chargers by up to 40 times.
Founded by the head of the Department of Material Science and Engineering at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Xtalic has commercialized products with 30 leading electronics firms and continues to leverage its proprietary toolkit to design and to patent stable nanostructured materials. Xtalic’s Dynamic Nanostructure Control process supercharges relatively benign and widely available materials to break through demanding requirements for hardness, strength, corrosion resistance, and durability.
Xtalic has applied its XTRONIC and LUNA nanostructured alloys to lengthen the service lives of electric vehicle charger connectors.
XTRONIC is a nanostructured nickel alloy that utilizes tungsten to stabilize grain boundaries and control overall grain size. It has a high hardness of > 650 HV. The alloy is commercialized as a barrier layer alternative in connector stacks to extend life or reduce precious metal cost in smartphone, electric vehicle, and enterprise server markets.
LUNA is a nanostructured silver alloy that utilizes tungsten to stabilize grain boundaries. It has a higher hardness of ~200 HV with electrical properties that replicate hard gold. LUNA extends the life of electric vehicle connectors and removes nickel from wearables and hearables to ensure safe contact with human skin.
Traditional connector contacts employ a silver-over-nickel-over-copper construction that wears through after 250 charge cycles. Xtalic replaces these layers with its materials to significantly enhance the connectors’ hardness, durability, and corrosion resistance. The Xtalic alloys have achieved up to 10,000 charge cycles in high normal force applications.
Xtalic products also can operate at 150° C or higher—temperatures that may cause conventional materials to lose critical properties required for safe operation. All Xtalic materials are stable at high temperatures due to a carefully engineered crystal structure.
Connector companies and OEMs are currently testing and qualifying the Xtalic materials, and the company expects to see them incorporated in the next generation of electric vehicles.
XTALIUM coating reduces electric vehicle weight. Xtalic is also developing XTALIUM, a suite of nanostructured aluminum alloys with application-dependent alloying elements, to help improve range and performance in the electric vehicle market.
The durable, corrosion-resistant coating enables the use of low-cost, lightweight magnesium alloy for automotive components. The magnesium parts weigh less than aluminum, and when coated with XTALIUM alloy, they have substantial corrosion protection. In addition, XTALIUM increases the corrosion resistance and performance of rare earth magnets.
Xtalic technology. Xtalic materials are created through an electrodeposition process that utilizes at least two materials—a primary material and an alloying element. The alloying element sits at the grain boundary of the primary material and provides stability over temperature and time.
By increasing the amount of alloying element, Xtalic tailors the primary material’s grain size and controls its properties. Adjusting the amount of alloying element during deposition alloys customers to choose graded options if a homogenous solutions is not sufficient. Stack solutions are created for customers consisting of Xtalic and off-the-shelf materials when a single material or graded solution is not sufficient to meet application demands.
Xtalic is also a leader in plating nanostructured alloys from both aqueous and non-aqueous ionic liquids using periodic, pulse-reverse plating. Xtalic tailors grain sizes and optimizes alloy concentrations during electrodeposition that produce a single-phase, super-saturated, solid-solution alloy.
Z.B. Jiao, C.A. Schuh (2018) “Nanocrystalline Ag-W alloys lose stability upon solute desegregation from grain boundaries,” Acta Materialia, Volume 161, Pages 194-206 doi: 10.1016/j.actamat.2018.09.014