Research Progress on High Capacity Lithium Ion Battery Ensures Safety
Researchers from Deakin University in Australia recently reported on a breakthrough which has the potential to significantly improve safety performance of high capacity lithium ion battery, especially at elevated working temperature. The improvement attributes to a new class of electrolyte material called ionic liquid, which, in contrary to the current electrolyte materials that dissolve lithium salt into organic solutions, is a salt that takes on liquid form at room temperature.
The Deakin team assembled a 1000mAh pouch cell incorporating ionic liquid as electrolyte. The battery uses lithium metal as its anode, which, despite its remarkably high energy density, is traditionally thought as dangerous and may lead to fire or explosion. Thanks to the ionic liquid electrolyte, instead of explosion, the battery exhibited good safety, high temperature stability, and high voltage stability for increased energy storage capacity.
According to the researchers, ionic liquid is non-volatile and fire resistant, and actually performs better at high temperatures. Furthermore, when paired with lithium metal anodes, potential benefits including higher energy density, faster charging rate and wider operating temperature can be garnered.
Next, the team’s goal will be demonstrating this technology in a 1700mAh battery which will bring ionic liquid one step closer to the commercial market.