STTR Phase II: High Energy and Power Density Supercapacitors Utilizing Electrodes Comprising Nanofibrous Carbon-Carbon Composites

Period of Performance: 01/01/2012 - 12/31/2012

$500K

Phase 2 STTR

Recipient Firm

Solarno Inc
153 Hollywood Dr
Coppell, TX 75019
Principal Investigator, Firm POC

Research Institution

University of Texas at Dallas
800 West Campbell Road
Richardson, TX 75080
Institution POC

Abstract

This Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) Phase II project will optimize the technology developed in Phase I for the fabrication of composite carbon nanofibers incorporating mesoporous high surface area carbon as an electrode material for supercapacitors utilizing ionic liquid electrolytes. The Phase I results showed that test devices incorporating our patent-pending carbon fibers have surpassed the performance of commercial supercapacitors and can provide energy densities approaching that of lead acid batteries with superior gravimetric power density. The technology is to be further developed and optimized using lower cost polymer precursors and carbon templates. Achievement of our Phase II goals of 30 Wh/kg at 10 kW/kg (packaged) with consistent performance up to 5x10^5 cycles means that this technology can become the material of choice for application to high-energy, high-power energy storage systems. The broader impact/commercial potential of this project lies in greatly expanding the market for supercapacitors for existing products and enabling new technologies, especially in those areas requiring energy densities that are higher than those provided by current supercapacitors. Such supercapacitors will be well suited for application to the Hybrid Electric Vehicle (HEV) market, including rapid charging stations; frequency regulation for the electric grid; and load leveling for renewable energy sources. Direct societal benefits will come from improving the viability of HEV due to reductions in fossil fuel consumption, improvements in power grid reliability, reducing costs for renewable energy production, and in replacing lead acid batteries. The world demand for supercapacitors is expected to reach $1.2 billion by 2015.