The Swedish Energy Agency is funding a five-year research project to develop cost efficient lithium ion batteries for vehicle applications. The research project is led by the Mid SwedenUniversity in collaboration with the Royal Institute of Technology (KTH). Two regional companies, Vesta Si Europe in Ljungaverk and Superior Graphite in Sundsvall are also participating in the project.
Electric vehicles are a high topical issue for switching out gasoline and diesel fuels.
- Today's batteries have limited performance and high costs. It is the largest obstacle for electrification of the vehicle fleet, says Joakim Bäckström, associate professor at Mid Sweden University.
The project will study how the performance of lithium-ion battery anodes can be improved in a cost effective manner. The idea is to use silicon and graphene to manufacture composite anodes to increase the energy density of lithium ion batteries. The developed methods and materials should be easily scalable to industrial production in order to have a short route from laboratory to market. The goal is to create battieries of higher capacity than today that are environmentally friendly and inexpensive.
- KTH has extensive experience in research on lithium-ion batteries and they have a state-of-the-art testing environment for this research. We are delighted to cooperate with them in the project, says Joakim Bäckström.
- We're very pleased to have such scientific and high-tech companies as Vesta Si in our vicinity, says Bäckström. One graduate student at Mid Sweden University and one at the company Vesta Si will be part of the project. Additionally, we will cooperate with a guest professor from University of Pittsburgh.
There are numerous research projects at Mid Sweden University on the subject material physics targeting energy storage. This project strengthens the research environment in this area and there are many synergies that can be achieved. Previously started projects in materials physics at FSCN; KEPS, COAT, Paper solar cells and MODULIT. They also aims to develop technologies for energy storage and new features and they will fit the schedule for the research area together with the lithium battery project.
The project for lithium batteries is financed by the The Swedish Energy Agency with a total of 7.7 million SEK.