Swiss High Energy Density Batteries - From Advanced Materials to a Safe Device (FAMSADI)

Scope of project

Energy storage technologies are critical enabling technologies and particularly important for the development of advanced, fuel-efficient, light- and heavy-duty vehicles. Battery technology is identified to hold a key role, and is essential as an enabling technology that helps promoting supply and delivery of reliable, affordable, and environmentally sound energy. Only a few battery technologies are commercially viable on a large scale and all of them have limitations compared to the demands of the transportation application.

In general, the battery configuration in a HEV (Hybrid Electric Vehicle) is responsible for 25-75% of the increased weight, volume, and costs. Even more critical is battery life, reliability, and behaviour under abuse. Currently, the high-end battery technology is based on the so called lithium-ion chemistry. Nowadays it is obvious that the energy density of batteries based on standard materials can be further improved in small steps only, namely by gradually improving the materials and by better engineering. Clearly, only the development of entirely new electroactive materials with much higher practical specific charge can offer a quantum jump in the energy density of batteries, as essential for their application in electric cars. Needless to say, the new battery materials must be based on abundant (and therefore potentially cheap) and environmentally friendly elements. The development of a battery based on new materials needs to proceed in well-defined consecutive (and strongly interdependent) steps including material development and characterization, development of battery electrodes, development of single cells, and development of the entire battery.

The overall objective of this project is therefore to develop a prototype cost-effective lithium-ion high energy and high power battery technology up to the level of a single cell, with electrode performances well beyond the current state-of-the-art, with automotive applications (hybrid vehicles and electric traction) as application target area. This will be achieved by innovative synthesis and design of radically improved electrode materials and by optimizing kinetics and stability through nanostructuring of all electroactive materials and components.


Prof. Dr. Reinhard Nesper, ETHZ
Telephone: +41 44 632 2854