Scalable Battery Design
Solid State Batteries are a new chemistry of battery that represents the next generation of high-energy density lithium-based batteries. By replacing the toxic liquid solvents found in traditional lithium-ion cells with solid materials, we enable safer, thinner batteries that have over double the energy density without the danger of battery explosions. Our program centers on developing novel methods to scale these solid state batteries from the laboratory to production scale. Traditional methods at the laboratory scale (such as spin coating and sputtering) are useful for proof of concept tests, but are too slow or small-size to mass produce batteries for practical purposes (e.g. car or phone batteries). By leveraging our spray-based approach, we are developing a flexible-chemistry platform to rapidly bring in-lab innovations to practical commercial applications.
Gabriel Badillo Crane's research currently focuses on adapting rapid spray techniques developed for the production of solar cells to the rapid production of high quality ultra-thin solid ceramic electrolyte. Solid state ceramic materials are promising for battery applications as they are often non-flammable and can have very low reactivity with lithium metal, opening the path to a lithium metal battery with high ionic conductivity and low electronic conductivity.