Most lithium ion batteries used today for cell phones and electric cars require the use of graphite. Ninety five percent of this graphite is imported from China, and with questionable mining practices and lax regulations, pollution from graphite factories is devastating communities. With just two SBIR awards from DOE and NSF, Coulometrics has developed a brand new technology to produce graphite in way that is safe for the environment and at a significantly lower cost to compete with overseas manufacturers. Coulometrics is working to build a North America supply chain for LIB-grade graphite.
Coulometrics recently leveraged its SBIR work to establish an exclusive joint venture with Novonix, called PUREgraphite, to develop, manufacture and sell these high performance anode materials into the global lithium ion battery market. In addition to creating new material and processes, Coulometrics places equal emphasis on capabilities to test batteries, and develops state of the art procedures to determine the life of a battery within a few weeks, as opposed to years.
The company has also utilized the SBIR program to evolve supercapacitors into a viable option for the automotive industry. Although supercapacitors offer high power capabilities and high energy efficiency, their use is limited due to high cost and low power density compared to the favorite lithium ion batteries. Through a project with NSF, Coulometrics has developed a process that can modify low cost activated carbon materials into supercapacitor grade carbons with 25% higher energy density and twice the current lifespan of existing materials. These critical developments will lower the overall system cost and improve cell life allowing for more widespread use of supercapacitors in renewable energy applications.