Venue MSG-024/025, Bernal Institute.
Lithium-ion batteries are becoming the key factor in the electrification of the transportation sector and in large-scale energy storage. However, the state-of-the-art lithium-ion batteries use elements that are scarce or geographically poorly dispersed. This has led to an increased pressure on access to raw materials and precursors used to manufacture lithium-ion batteries.
There is therefore an interest to develop batteries based on naturally abundant elements given that such batteries could provide competitive energy densities to that of lithium-ion batteries. Sodium-ion batteries have thus gained much attention as they have the potential to decrease the cost of batteries while improving the sustainability since they could in principle be manufactured with no use of cobalt, copper, lithium, and graphite.
Over the last few years, the Younesi team has developed and proposed a sodium-ion battery prototype with low-cost materials, long-life cycling, and improved safety. The cell consists of sodium bis(oxalate)borate (NaBOB) as fluorine-free salt dissolved in non-flammable alkyl phosphate-based solvents such as triethyl phosphate (TEP) and trimethyl phosphate (TMP) as the electrolyte solution with the ionic conductivity of 5 mS.cm−1 at room temperature. Prussian white (Na2Fe2(CN)6) cathode with theoretical capacity of 170 mAh/g and average potential of 3.1 V and hard carbon anode with industrial mass loading and formulation have been developed.
The development led to launching the ALTRIS company which is a spin-off from Uppsala University aiming for commercialisation of sodium-ion batteries. The company has successfully raised funding in seed round and Series A funding round. The work of ALTRIS spans from developing cathodes, electrolytes, and battery cells to designing blueprints for market-leading sodium-ion batteries. ALTRIS aim to make a substantial global impact by fostering scalable, superior battery technology.
ABOUT THE PRESENTER
Reza Younesi is Associate Professor at Ångström Advanced Battery Centre at Uppsala University, Sweden, and one of the three founders of ALTRIS. He worked as a postdoctoral fellow at Technical University of
Denmark (DTU) in 2013-2014. Reza received his Ph.D. from the department of Chemistry – Ångström Laboratory in Uppsala University and M.Sc. from Royal Institute of Technology (KTH), Sweden. The research focus at Younesi’s team is on interfacial reaction in rechargeable batteries and materials development for sodium-ion and lithium-ion batteries.