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Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Improved Lithium-based batteries

Well since we have been on the topic of green energy storage devices since some time in January I thought I should digress from the Honeywell story for a little while, but I will come back to this subject in the future. Two things have come to my attention in recent weeks. One is Leyden Energy, a California company. They say that the government and Honeywell are all wrong with the lithium hexafluorophosphate endeavor. They say the key to Lithium technology is using imide salt (instead of Lithium hexafluorophosphate) and a graphite collector.

See in conventional Lithium ion batteries, an aluminum collector (traditional lithium ion re-chargeables) is often used. But for vehicle batteries Lithium-iron phosphate (re-chargeables used in vehicle applications) has traditionally been used. The use of Lithium phosphate comes at a high price though. While able to withstand the higher temperatures that vehicle applications demand it comes at a rather low energy density.

Now back to Leyden's graphite collector-- it touts an energy density of 225 watt hours per kilogram which puts it right up there with the best laptop batteries. Additionally since Leyden's batteries use a graphite collector the aluminum collector is not present to corrode. All of this adds up to one thing-- a longer lasting battery life. Leyden's supposed to start putting their batteries in Android devices later on this year. The vehicle batteries are still in their testing phase, but they ran them in Toyota Grand Prix in April of 2011.

You can read more about the batteries and performance tests of it in the Grand Prix here:Read more about the Grand Prix here.

And you can learn more about Leyden Energy at their website:Leyden Energy Homepage

Not to be outdone by us Americans, the Chinese recently released their own study of lithium based batteries. You see the Chinese are saying we are even more wrong. They are using LiFNFSI electrolyte which they say is even better than the imide salts idea. Who to say who is true in this situation, only the test of time will be able to tell us.  Our good friends over at the Huazhong University of Science and Technology who did this research can be further explored here: Huazhong University.

If anyone wants to read more on this subject, I would suggest you going to the Green Car Congress' website:Green Car Congress

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