|United States Of America||Issued Patent||10,665,896||05/26/2020||2015-088|
As the most reducing and lightest metal, lithium is a desirable battery anode material due to its abilities to yield a high cell voltage and a high specific energy capacity. Lithium ion (Li-ion) battery technology is expected to grow to a $30B industry in the next 5 to 10 years. This growth is largely driven by the introduction of electric vehicles which reached one million plug-in electric vehicles globally in 2015. Problems with Li electrodes have been investigated and challenges remain, including dendrite growth, flammability of organic solvents, and decomposition of the anions at the electrode. To address these challenges, researchers at UC Berkeley are developing single-ion, solid polymer electrolytes as replacements for liquid electrolytes. The investigators have demonstrated a solid-state battery system which uses single-ion conduction and leverages three-dimensional connectivity of polymer networks to provide superior mechanical strength and flexibility which affects bulk conductivity.