Real Time In-Situ Composition and Thickness Control System for Deposition of Superconducting Tape Films

Period of Performance: 01/01/2001 - 12/31/2001

$100K

Phase 1 SBIR

Recipient Firm

NEI Corp.
201 Circle Drive North, Suite 102/103
Piscataway, NJ 08873
Principal Investigator
Firm POC

Abstract

65396 Microcrystalline LiCoO2 is the most commonly used cathode material in present day rechargeable Li-ion batteries. Although LiCoO2 is both expensive and toxic, other materials in microcrystalline form do not match its performance. An opportunity exists for new cathode materials that are inexpensive, non-toxic, and have an energy density of ~ 500 Wh/kg. LixFePO4 is an attractive cathode material for commercial applications because of its low cost and non-toxicity. However, its performance in a microcrystalline form has been poor. This project will develop nanostructured composite particles of LixFePO4/C as new cathode materials. To accomplish this, LixFePO4 will be synthesized by a solution method, and an intimate mixture with carbon will be formed using a vapor phase method. The overall goal is to achieve high energy density (~ 500 Wh/kg) and long cycle life (> 250) at high discharge rates (¿ 1C). In Phase I, nano - LixFePO4/C composite particles will be synthesized on a bench scale, and the electrochemical properties of cathodes fabricated using these powders will be evaluated. Commercial Applications And Other Benefits as described by awardee: The cathode in rechargeable Li-ion batteries accounts for a worldwide market of more than $250 million/year. Cheaper and more environmentally friendly cathode materials with good electrochemical properties should play a major role as Li-ion batteries evolve in the years to come.