Australian advanced materials technology company, Talga Resources has announced positive initial test results from the development of its graphene silicon lithium-ion anode in the UK.
The results are the first under Talga’s UK Government funded “Safevolt” project – a Talga-led program run in conjunction with consortia partners, Johnson Matthey, the University of Cambridge and manufacturing research group, TWI.
Under Safevolt, Talga is developing a high energy graphene silicon anode product, termed TalnodeTM-Si, targeting significantly higher capacity than commercial graphite anodes.
Talga managing director, Mark Thompson said TalnodeTM-Si will suit the growing demand for Li-ion batteries with higher capacity to extend the range of electric vehicles and work time of portable electronic devices.
“We are excited to see further success as we progress development of our next generation of battery products and materials to be produced from our Swedish resources. We are pleased to be at the fore-front of developing a Li-ion anode product that has a fast growing future, and uses both our emerging supplies of graphene and graphite,” Thompson said.
Major Li-ion battery manufacturers are requiring higher energy density via increasing amounts of silicon in graphite anodes, however silicon use is hindered by a range of battery life and stability problems.
Talga’s test results show TalnodeTM-Si with graphene is effective in stabilising the silicon as it expands, maintaining battery life while enabling much higher energy density.
Recently, several automotive manufacturers have stated their intent to move to higher energy-to- weight ratios in their next generation battery packs and other large groups in the anode supply chain have communicated the use of silicon technologies in graphite to produce silicon oxide- based graphite.
For example, Volkswagen estimates that cell energy density will increase by 25 per cent from 2018 to 2025 and are targeting 20 per cent silicon anodes from 2020.
Higher capacity batteries can benefit industry by extending device operating times (or range in an EV). Higher capacity can also lead to lower costs, as the increased energy density decreases the cost per unit of energy (Kw/hr) for the total battery pack. This increased capacity is a critical metric for customers, and particularly China where lucrative new energy vehicle subsidies are tied to energy density.
Talga Resources is an advanced materials technology company enabling stronger, lighter and more functional products for the multi-billion dollar global coatings, battery, construction and polymer composites markets via graphene and graphite products.
The company has furher cycling tests and optimisation of TalnodeTM-Si underway at its battery material facility in the Maxwell Centre at Cambridge University in the UK. Interim samples are being prepared for delivery to end users in Asia under confidentiality and material transfer agreements.