Project looks at new materials for solid-state batteries

November 16, 2018 // By Christoph Hammerschmidt
Researchers at the Jülich Institute for Energy and Climate Research (IEK) are now getting to the bottom of the question of which materials are best for solid state batteries.

The most common battery technology today is lithium-ion batteries with a liquid electrolyte. Solid-state batteries, on the other hand, rely on a solid electrolyte, such as ceramic, which makes them chemically and thermally more stable. In principle, a solid state battery can therefore store more energy than a ceramic battery. It is also more environmentally friendly, less sensitive to heat and, unlike conventional lithium-ion batteries, cannot catch fire.

Solid-state batteries thus can play an important role in the energy revolution and the switch to a sustainable energy system. The main field of application is believed tob e electromobility, but many other applications are also conceivable in which such batteries offer advantages over conventional batteries – for example, in-house storage systems for energy storage in buildings.

Before such batteries however can be used economically, phenomena such as loss of capacity during charging or discharging and the still low current must be clarified. The Unibat project is intended to make a contribution to this: "Our fundamental goal is to test the behaviour of different material combinations in battery components," explains Dr. Sven Uhlenbruck, team leader for thin-cutting technologies at the Institute for Energy and Climate Research, Materials Synthesis and Manufacturing Processes at Forschungszentrum Jülich . To this end, novel coating technologies are being established and tested. With the help of this data and the resulting findings, the scientists want to develop intelligent material concepts, according to Uhlenbruck.

The Unibat research project is funded by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMFB) with 2 million euros and will run for three years.

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