Increasing battery efficiency through nanoparticle suspensions

Solar and Wind power, and electric cars, require major advances in storage technology.  A Cambridge, MA based company named 24M, is working on concentrated nanoparticle suspensions of common lithium-ion (Li-ion) battery cathode materials to create an energy-dense liquid that can slowly flow over a membrane like the separators used in conventional Li-ion batteries. A similar suspension of an anode material like graphite or lithium titanate (LTO) flows over the membrane on the other side.

This process will significantly increase the storage capacity of batteries and, in a paper released recently by company founder Yet-Ming Chiang, may approach the cost storage parameter required for the next level Electric Cars and Smart Grids.

“The authors project that the suspensions will contribute some $40/kWh to $80/kWh to the cost of the battery, potentially meaning that system-level costs could hit the widely cited targets of $250/kWh for electric vehicle batteries or $100/kWh for stationary (grid storage) batteries”  From Smart Grid News

The company is shrouded in secrecy, so there’s  not much additional information available, but we will keep an eye on announcements as they are made!