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Electrolytes for Lithium Ion Batteries

DOE Grant Recipients

Arizona Technology Enterprises

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Technology Marketing SummaryAs mobile electronics continue to evolve, the need for high-output, long-lasting rechargeable batteries has grown tremendously. In the search for suitable materials from which to construct high energy density batteries, one of the principal obstacles has been the provision of a suitable electrolyte that exhibits the right combination of conductivity and ion mobility, stability, and wide electrochemical window. Very few electrolytes have been developed thus far that exhibit the above combination of performance parameters. Despite significant research in the area, there remains a need for improved electrolytes that can be easily incorporated into voltaic cells without significant extra cost.DescriptionResearchers at Arizona State University have developed a new class of ‘rubbery’ electrolytes which comprise lithium salts in combination with long-chain polymers. The resulting electrolytes are stable, highly conductive, and have a wide electrochemical window. As such, they are excellent targets for use in rechargeable electrochemical devices such as batteries.Benefits•    High Conductivity – exceptionally high conductivity at temperatures of 100 degrees or lower (including room temperature).
•    Solid Consistency – elastic or rubbery solid.
•    Longer Cycle Life – The solvents remain highly effective even after hundreds of charge / discharge cycles.
•    Lithium Compatible – These solvents work well with alkali metal anodes in general, and with lithium and lithium-ion anodes in particular.
•    Wider Electrochemical Window - The solvents have a wide electrochemical window of 4+ volts.
Applications and Industries•    Rechargeable Batteries
•    Photovoltaic Cells
•    Photochromic Displays
•    Other Electrochemical Applications
More InformationThis technology part of a large suite of electrolyte and battery technologies developed at Arizona State University. Significant testing has been completed, and the results have been published. At this time, AzTE is seeking potential partners and licensees for these issued patents and related technologies.Patents and Patent Applications
ID Number
Title and Abstract
Primary Lab
Patent 5,506,073
Lithium ion conducting electrolytes
A liquid, predominantly lithium-conducting, ionic electrolyte having exceptionally high conductivity at temperatures of C. or lower, including room temperature, and comprising the lithium salts selected from the group consisting of the thiocyanate, iodide, bromide, chloride, perchlorate, acetate, tetrafluoroborate, perfluoromethane sulfonate, perfluoromethane sulfonamide, tetrahaloaluminate, and heptahaloaluminate salts of lithium, with or without a magnesium-salt selected from the group consisting of the perchlorate and acetate salts of magnesium. Certain of the latter embodiments may also contain molecular additives from the group of acetonitrile (CH.sub.3 CN) succinnonitrile (CH.sub.2 CN).sub.2, and tetraglyme (CH.sub.3 --O--CH.sub.2 --CH.sub.2 --O--).sub.2 (or like solvents) solvated to a Mg.sup.+2 cation to lower the freezing point of the electrolyte below room temperature. Other particularly useful embodiments contain up to about 40, but preferably not more than about 25, mol percent of a long chain polyether polymer dissolved in the lithium salts to provide an elastic or rubbery solid electrolyte of high ambient temperature conductivity and exceptional C. conductivity. Another embodiment contains up to about but not more than 10 mol percent of a molecular solvent such as acetone.
Patent 5,962,169
Lithium ion conducting electrolytes
The present invention relates generally to highly conductive alkali-metal ion non-crystalline electrolyte systems, and more particularly to novel and unique molten (liquid), rubbery, and solid electrolyte systems which are especially well suited for use with high current density electrolytic cells such as primary and secondary batteries.
Patent 5,786,110
Alkali-metal-ion conducting electrolytes
High-conductivity alkali-metal-ion containing electrolytes comprising viscous liquid or rubbery solid alkali metal salts which obtain conductivity by the domainate motion of cation ions which, when produced in accordance herewith, remain freely mobile at low temperatures. One embodiment relates to molten alkali metal salt electrolytes comprised of one or more alkali metal salt compositions which are substantially non-crystalline and have glass transition temperatures below room temperature.
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